Tuesday, July 5, 2005

Videogames Better Than Therapy

SAN FRANCISCO (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – If pioneering psychiatrist Sigmund Freud was around these days, he might have his patients play videogames when they sit on his couch.

At least that’s what videogame designer Tim Schafer is thinking, after developing his latest game, Psychonauts.

The game forces players to develop their psychic abilities. Some levels even make them deal metaphorically with their inner demons and fears.

Schafer says he did this by making the characters feel real so that a player “would WANT to help them defeat online villains like the “Censors” or the “Steamer Trunk Of Emotional Baggage.”

He also managed to deal with his own past traumas by setting the game in a summer camp and relying on his own camp experiences “as much as possible.”

The long hours have been worth it for Schafer, who says his best review came from a woman who said one hour of Psychonauts helped her more than years of therapy.

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