Finnish researchers developing video game to help ease symptoms of depression

A group of scientists from Finland are now developing a “therapeutic action game” to help ease the symptoms depression.

It all started when a research group from Aalto University were studying amblyopia, or lazy eye. Professor Matias Palva and his team noticed that patients improved their vision after playing a special training video game, while drugs didn’t affect their visual activity at all.

“We noticed that the targeted video games make it possible to alleviate the symptoms of a brain disease that was thought to be permanent,” Palva says.

Their project looks like any other modern video game but has a complicated network of features, which can produce a therapeutic effect. Patients, who actively played the first version of the game for eight weeks, saw their cognitive function improved.

Now from this study, the researchers of Aalto University are looking for a game designer, programmer, and artist, and say that the development will continue through the summer of 2022. The project has a budget of under €1 million, but the developers also attracted additional funding of €500,000.

The game however isn’t suitable for older people and for patients who have severe psychotic depression.

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