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Deepwell Digital Therapeutics (DTx) announced today the winners of the first Mental Health Game Jam. A panel of experts from both the games and medical industries selected three big winners out of more than 100 entries. It also recognized several other games as best in their respective categories.
The grand prize winner is Inner Room, by developer Byebyesama. According to the developer description, the title depicts three days of lockdown as a person with depression: “When awake, our main character must complete the most mundane tasks — waking up, eating, showering, and opening a window. In any typical game, these tasks would require just one click. Now you will need your whole keyboard to sort them out.” Byebyesama won a $25,000 prize for their efforts.
Second place went to Bíotópico, by developer Everyday Lemonade. This title is a breathing game developed for the Playdate handheld system. The Breath that players “collect” in their breathing exercises can be used to create in-game trees. Everyday Lemonade won a $10,000 prize.
Third place went to Fumble, by developer ComfyDev. The game is a puzzle title, where the “puzzle” is how to speak to others while struggling with social anxiety.
In addition to the above winners, the judges also acknowledged several games for exceptional qualities: Balance It Out won the Most Educational award. Mood Farm had the best art. Can You? was the most innovative. Bottles won Most Accessible, and Mockingzen won Most Engaging.
Mike Wilson, co-founder, DeepWell DTx, said in a statement, “We truly believe in the power of games to help treat mental illness. It goes to show that the games community recognizes that games are and can be good for you, and we are excited about taking the first steps to making games that can serve as both entertainment and with therapeutic value.”
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