Long viewed as a contributing factor in teenage isolation, computer games are now being used to treat adolescent depression in an innovative New Zealand programme.
Rather than simply encouraging players to engage in mindless destruction, the Sparx video game attempts to teach teenagers how to deal with depression using a psychological approach known as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). Just as importantly, its creators set out to make the game exciting for those teenagers who are often reluctant to seek counselling and bored by well-meaning advice on how to cope with depression.
The result is a role-playing fantasy game, where teenagers adopt a warrior avatar and get to blast negative thoughts with fireballs while trying to save the world from sinking into a mire of pessimism and despair.
The game has seven levels, each lasting 35-40 minutes - the same as a counselling session - and is aimed at 13 to 17-year-olds, the age range when adolescent depression generally kicks in.
BdST 2223 HRS, JUL 31, 2012
Sabbin Hasan, ICT Editor
All rights reserved. Sale, redistribution or reproduction of information/photos/illustrations/video/audio contents on this website in any form without prior permission from banglanews24.com are strictly prohibited and liable to legal action.