The world of mental health is a tricky topic. For so long it has not been looked upon favourably. I, myself, have had a long battle with mental illness and I know many others are in a similar boat. That’s why, when a company does something – anything – to support or benefit those suffering, it’s such a huge deal.
Ninja Theory, the studio who brought us Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, is a prime example of this supportive nature. Hellblade, for anyone unfamiliar with the title, deals heavily with the main character suffering from mental health conditions. And instead of making them seem crazy or a threat, they helped shed some much-needed light on the topic.
The studio looks to be continuing their support as they helped set up a mental health tutor scholarship. More recently, Ninja Theory revealed The Insight Project, which will research and help develop ways to help alleviate mental suffering. They aim to do this through a combination of game designs, technology, and scientific development.
The Dream Team
As reported on Xbox Wire, Ninja Theory co-founder Tameem Antoniades and neuroscience Professor Paul Fletcher of the University of Cambridge came together when developing Hellblade. The pair continued their work through to The Insight Project. Which, as noted on Xbox Wire, looks to;
“lead to self-contained, individualised and absorbing game experiences within which people can become an expert at recognising, responding to and, ultimately, controlling their own fear, anxiety and other negative subjective experience.”
Furthermore, The Insight Project looks to further the progress with us of;
“rigorous scientific principles to ensure its effectiveness and validity and it will adhere to strict standards of ethics and data management.”
As you can imagine, the pairing of Tameem and Paul mean business. As far as I’m concerned, anything that can help mental anguish in any way deserves all the attention it can get.