AS IF, an Empathy Game for Chronic Pain

Published in CHI EA ’16 Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems, 2015

Recommended citation: Jin, W., Ulas, S. & Tong, X. AS IF: A Game As an Empathy Tool for Experiencing the Activity Limitations of Chronic Pain Patients. in CHI EA ’16 Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems 172–175 (ACM, 2016). doi:10.1145/2851581.2890369

This paper is about the design of a body-sensing game that fosters non-patients’ empathy for Chronic Pain sufferers.

ASIF-game

Pain is both a universal and unique experience for its sufferers. Nonetheless, pain is also invisible and incommunicable that it becomes difficult for the public to understand or even believe the suffering, especially for the persistent form of pain: Chronic Pain. Therefore, we designed and developed the game – AS IF – to foster non-patients’ empathy for Chronic Pain sufferers. In this game, players engage with the connecting dots tasks through whole body interaction. After they generate the connection with their virtual body, they will experience a certain degree of activity limitation that mimics one of the sufferings of Chronic Pain. In this paper, we introduce the game design that facilitates the enhancement of empathy for Chronic Pain experience, and illustrate how this game acts as a form of communication media that may help to enhance understanding.

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