Altruism in games

March 26, 2015

The following was a series of tweets via the @heartsandcoins Twitter account on March 26, 2015.

The tweets are collated here, in order.

I completed #LifeIsStrange ( ep 2 the other night, and the idea of ‘altruism *in* games’ has been on my mind & heart.

Like no other medium, games provide an opportunity to create ‘agency’ (control) and place players in situations–new and unfamiliar.

A game can encourage a player to empathise with someone different. Or a game can reach out and empathise with the player. Both powerful.

A game can help players glimpse what it’s like to be judged by the colour of your skin, your gender, your faith, your orientation/identity.

A game might help players understand what being unsafe means to a woman. What it’s like to ‘come out’. Have dysmorphia. Anxiety. Depression.

There are already wonderful examples of games *as* altruism. But the opportunity is to go further. Our industry needs this. *We* need this.

And it goes beyond the game. There are post- discussions that need to take place: Media, forums, help groups. Expanded official web sites.

If you are in any way interested in how games can explore compassion and empathy, you *need* to play #LifeIsStrange by @DONTNOD_Ent

Be warned, though. There are triggers. And there’s good reason why the developers have created this page:

Ultimately… Whatever games you play, whatever situation you are in right now, know this: you matter. #lifeisstrange

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