Grip was designed for kids who just learned that they were diagnosed with diabetes. The conversation about what it means living with diabetes is usually between the parents and the doctor, leaving the kids with a lot of questions. So the client wanted a game the kids could play that learned them the effects of eating too much or not enough sugar and when and how much insuline should be taken at certain moments.
We wanted it to be a playful adventure that would feel like a sunday morning cartoon, with colorful characters that were just like our target audience young and lliving with diabetes, going on special missions around the world. We came up with a silly story in which the kids would play as secret agents working for the Diabetes Institue. They would be chasing after the evil Doctor Glucos who stole an incredible amount of documentation from the institute, containing crusual information about how to live with diabetes.
For the first version of the game we worked on two different kind of games, one action platformer and some sort of puzzle/memory type of game in which players had to dismantle a bomb by providing the correct tools. In both games their glucose level needed to be managed by either eating something, like an apple, or by injecting the right dose of insuline. Would the player fail to manage the glucose levels, the game would display a variety of on screen distortians to make playing a lot more difficult. These distortians were linked to reallife effects the kids would feel when not managing their levels, like headache or dizzyness.
Along the way the players would find various documents Doctor Gluco lost while on the run. These documents contained information and tips about living with diabetes.
The game also connects personalized information from the electronic patient file to the game. This way children learn to make decisions and develop skills based on their current health and parents and the attending physician can monitor the patient’s condition on a daily basis.
Grip won the Top Innovation Award 2008
Client – NPCF
Development – &Ranj, The Health Agency & Stichting Diabeter
Release March 2008
Related links & articles
Article: Future-making Serious Games
Article: Excerpt from “Computer Games & Instruction”
Article: Evidence Based Game Design