The use and effect of video game design theory in the creation of game-based systems for upper limb stroke rehabilitation

Authors: Barrett, N., Swain, I.D., Gatzidis, C. and Mecheraoui, C.

Journal: Journal of Rehabilitation and Assistive Technologies Engineering

Volume: 3

Pages: 1-16


Upper limb exercise is often neglected during post-stroke rehabilitation. Video games have been shown to be useful in providing environments in which patients can practise repetitive, functionally meaningful movements, and in inducing neuroplasticity. The design of video games is often focused upon a number of fundamental principles, such as reward, goals, challenge and the concept of meaningful play, and these same principles are important in the design of games for rehabilitation. Further to this, there have been several attempts for the strengthening of the relationship between commercial game design and rehabilitative game design, the former providing insight into factors that can increase motivation and engagement with the latter. In this article, we present an overview of various game design principles and the theoretical grounding behind their presence, in addition to attempts made to utilise these principles in the creation of upper limb stroke rehabilitation systems and the outcomes of their use. We also present research aiming to move the collaborative efforts of designers and therapists towards a model for the structured design of these games and the various steps taken concerning the theoretical classification and mapping of game design concepts with intended cognitive and motor outcomes.

Source: BURO EPrints