The Story of the Game | Signs of Autism
A pediatrician gives the package carrier an urgent package to deliver to the parents of one of the pediatrician’s patients, a newly born infant. It is the package carrier’s job to deliver the package as quickly as possible. In order to deliver the package quickly, the package carrier must use the road signs on the highway of life as clues to locate the parents and deliver the urgent message about their child.
The pacing of the game will change depending on where the player is at in the game. Initially the pace of the game will be slow with the player starting off the game walking down the road (the road signs will be easy to click). The pace of the game will then pick up with the player riding a bike (the road signs will be harder to click). The pace towards the end of the game will be fast pace with the player driving a car (the player will likely miss some of the road signs).
The player will be given a walkthrough on how to play the game as they enter into game play. The player will be able to click on a GPS icon during game play to get information on how to play the game in case they forget. There are also detours along the road that the player can take to help educate them about autism along the way.
The game will take place on various roads and the player will be able to choose which road to take. The player will do this by using the arrow keys to choose their path or click on a sign via a mouse to travel down the road of their choice.
The player is not expected to know much about autism when they enter the game. The goal is for the player to be able to learn how to notice the symptoms of autism and to know of some ways to prevent autism. The player is expected to know at the end of gameplay that autism is a disorder that can affect anyone.
The short-term victories will be moving from one road sign to the other when the player clicks on a sign of autism. The player progresses to the next level when they select 5 signs of autism correctly. The long-term victories for the player will be progressing from walking to riding a bike to driving a car. There will be “check-point” intermissions between these short-term victories to let the player know what signs of autism they have missed along the way. Each sign the player clicks on has rewards and consequences that could possibly speed up or slow down the player from delivering the urgent package.
The final outcome is the package carrier delivering the urgent package to the parents before the child starts school (the quality of life for someone with autism is better when it is diagnosed early). The urgent package shows whether or not the child has been diagnosed with autism based off of the stat that 1 in 88 children have autism.
The player will know that they are winning by the number of signs of autism that they select correctly. There will be an indicator that keeps a tally of this score. Once a player selects 5 signs of autism correctly they move to the next level. If they miss more than 3 signs of autism they get lost and have to go back to the pediatrician’s office. There will also be a time indicator which is described below.
The time indicator will basically be the age of the child. The child is a newborn at the beginning of gameplay. However, the child ages as gameplay persists. The goal is to deliver the package to the parents when the child is as young as possible. The age of the child impacts the message of the urgent package at the end of game.
Fun and Motivation:
Signs of Autism will be a fun game because it places the player in a position to direct the outcome the message within the urgent package. This allows the player to make a difference in the diagnosis of autism by becoming more aware of its symptoms. This game addresses the altruism motivational theory that people generally want to help improve the welfare of others.