GOOD

These Video Games Might Actually Help Cure Depression

A game developer wants to submit his games to the FDA, and receive a medical seal of approval.

Image via Flickr User SobControllers

While Super Mario Kart was so many deeply, deeply wonderful things, one thing it was not was “a cure for depression.” And while games since then have tried to claim cognitive value, the research has been by and large debunked. In comes Adam Gazzaley, and his startup, Akili, designed to actually create video games with sincere, therapeutic value. Gazzaley is hopeful about his prospects, but sadly, there are no official plans to have Bowser in the works.


Image via sketchport.com

Gazzaley wants to create a series of games, and submit them to the FDA for actual medical approval. Neuroracer, a game he currently has in development, hopes to help players build neural connections and strengthen their cognitive skills. His goal is to help users strengthen their multitasking skills by focusing their attention, expanding their working memory, and managing their goals. Never has multitasking been so fun. Because it’s never fun. Because it’s the worst.

The company currently has four games in development, and Gazzaley knows it might takes years before the FDA offers its approval. Currently, the designer has teamed up with a group of neuroscientists and designers to develop games that aren’t just fun, but have real medical value. Akili is currently testing its products with multiple client populations around the globe, including individuals struggling with autism, depression, ADHD, and traumatic brain injury. The science may be years away, but the concept couldn’t be more classic.

(Via: Fusion)

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