„I’m a huge believer that we should be talking about mental health more, and since I’m a huge nerd, especially when it comes to video games, this channel is a space for conversation about how mental health shows up in video games.“

Danielle (sie/ihre), lizensierte Psychotherapeutin (YouTube Kanal Counselor Plays).

Disclaimer: Alle hier gelisteten Spiele und Beiträge sowie Bilder gehören den entsprechend genannten Personen oder Instanzen.

Gris – Depressionen & Trauer

Gris – Nomada Studio

“Gris, meaning gray in Spanish, is about a girl who is going through a personal loss. She journeys through the five well-known stages of grief as she attempts to find her voice (literally). The world of Gris is absolutely drop-dead gorgeous and is comprised of stages and moments which represent the grief which our protagonist is moving through. As she journeys, she is pursued by a black amorphous inky creature which takes several monstrous forms throughout the game, a metaphor for grief and depression’s ability to appear for each of us as anyone or anything, unexpectedly and at any moment. She must survive this thing, lest it devours her and drown us in inky blackness. This metaphor is very on-the-nose, but the way it is presented through the game’s art is staggering – and that staggering effect is what makes the game so perfect.”

The Gamer – Will Harris, 30. Januar 2019

Celeste – Angststörungen

Celeste – Matt Thorson, Noel Berry

“Celeste is about a girl called Madeline (not Celeste – Celeste is the mountain she is trying to climb). Why is she trying to climb a mountain? Because Madeline suffers from anxiety and has reached a crisis point in her young adult life where she doesn’t know what path she should be taking. She seeks a sense of challenge and accomplishment, and so has come to conquer Celeste. As the game progresses, you the player are introduced to Madeline’s self-doubt and anxiety in the form of a sardonic and cruel version of herself who mocks her and knocks her confidence. Her anxiety manifests as panic attacks and there are a handful of moments where you must help Madeline reach an inner calm by balancing an on-screen feather (as someone who suffers from anxiety, this metaphor and calming technique resonated an awful lot).”

The Gamer – Will Harris, 30. Januar 2019

Night in the Woods – Dissoziative Störung und Depressionen

Night in the Woods – Infinite Fall

“Mae, 20 years old, drops out of college and returns to her hometown – a quiet town where nothing much happens. Her loss of place in the world is clear from the beginning, as she feels dislocated, lost, wandering through life without purpose. We, the player, attempt to figure her out as she eludes us, even though we are in control of her. She avoids questions and her parents welcome her with open arms without making too much of a fuss at first. As the story progresses and things get weirder, we learn just how deep Mae’s dissociation goes, internally and externally. It’s a complicated story in which nothing much seems to be happening, much like the life of a person dealing with depression or anxiety – these people can be reclusive, avoidant, disillusioned, and somber. They need our help but don’t reach out. Mae is all of this, and we must play through her story. It’s a damn smart game at its core and has so much to teach us about what depression and anxiety looks like (it can look like anything).”

The Gamer – Will Harris, 30. Januar 2019

Milky Way Prince – Borderline-Persönlichkeits-störung

The Milky Way Prince – Lorenzo Redaelli, Eyeguys

“When I finished Milky Way Prince: The Vampire Star for the first time, I sat in silence for half an hour contemplating what I’d just experienced while the main menu music played in the background. This is a game that demands reflection and thought from its player. It’s not a fun game or one for those faint of heart. In fact, I stop short of calling it a game at all. It feels deeper and more important than that. It depicts the impact of borderline personality disorder on those who struggle with it and those they love. There’s mention of self-harm and suicide. This is a mature, very personal and often uncomfortable journey that tells a story that has never been told in gaming before in a way that flies in the face of conventional game design in order to deliver its theme and message. A first person visual novel, Milky Way Prince is a partly-autobiographical love story created almost entirely by one man – Lorenzo Redaelli. It tells the story of a relationship between the player character Nuki and “a shooting star” called Sune. Nuki enjoys looking at the stars and is immediately won over by the enigmatic Sune, describing the attraction as almost gravitational. When the pair first meet, Sune is crying. He warns Nuki that he’s dangerous to be around and that he hurts everyone. Undeterred, Nuki falls head over heels for Sune and the pair start a whirlwind romance and they settle into the orbit of one another. Or, at least that’s what Nuki believes. The reality is far more complex.”

Finger Guns – Sean Davies, 12 August 2020

Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice – Schizophrenie und Depression

Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice – Ninja Theory

“If there is one game that goes above and beyond in the representation of mental health – one game that can teach us real empathy for those struggling with anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts, and schizophrenia – it’s Hellblade. This game was designed from the ground up to be fully true to the experiences and feelings of those who suffer from mental health issues, and this dedication has paid off in spades. Senua is a girl living in the world of Norse Mythology. She is attempting to reach Helheim and save the soul of her deceased partner. From the game’s outset, she is plagued by voices of doubt, disdain, and threat (an experienced enhanced ten-fold with headphones). She fights against demons and creatures that we might frequently doubt are even real. She reaches locked doors and gates, and must search for signs and symbols hidden in the trees and the environment – more examples of a paranoid mind searching for meaning when there is none. I could go on and on, but this game does so much to represent a mind being torn asunder by paranoid schizophrenia; bombarded by grief, thoughts of death, and depression. It is a difficult game to play, to be sure, especially if the player him/herself is in a fragile state. If you’re looking, however, to understand mental health in its most extreme cases, this game will do more for you than any novel or film that I’ve come across. It is a masterpiece.”

The Gamer – Will Harris, 30. Januar 2019

Omori – Depression und Suizid

Omori – Omocat

“The game focuses on OMORI, a depressed otaku, who lives in WHITE SPACE for as long as he can remember. […] Occasionally, he is going on adventures with his friends and helps others in this world. He wonders why his friends would want to be with someone horrible like him, but OMORI recalls a time when he was not like this. He also seems to have forgotten […] someone very important.”

Omori is about depression. […] It tackles very real issues of mental illness in both a direct and metaphorical way. Playing just the first hour hit me with a representation of deep depression and detachment that resonated with me so hard I had to put the game down. […]Omori is painful to play, but not because it pushes you into fantastical situations filled with difficult choices, but because it’s real, and it’s that realness that makes it terrifying.

Gamecrate – Angelo M. D’Argenio, Jan 07, 2021

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