Vienna-based researcher, educator and designer Fares Kayali is a Game Designer in the Human Computer Interaction Group at the Vienna University of Technology.
He’s been central to the creation of a rhythm game that is proven to help people who are missing limbs learn to more easily strengthen their muscles and control prosthetics.
Called MyoBeatz, the players twinge their flexor and extensor muscles in time with the music, and according to visual cues. It looks a little like a dance mat game, and popular songs are used to make it more fun.
As it’s been developed by scientists, the game has been extensively peer reviewed to assess its value for myoelectric prosthesis training, in which players use their muscle contractions as input signal and control the game like they would a real prosthesis.
“The research question here is: can we make a music game that is engaging in the long term, and also leads to an increase in parameters for neuromuscular rehabilitation,” he said in an explanatory video.
“Previously we’ve used game-based approaches in healthcare applications and in wellbeing to keep up patient motivation.”
Now also Professor of Digital Education and Learning at the Centre for Teacher Education at the University of Vienna, Kayali is also the co-founder of the Positive Impact Games Lab. This has worked on more than 40 projects with the belief that games are an “expressive medium” with the potential to “induce and support positive change.”
His works has been nominated for high-profile awards like IndieCade, the Independent Games Festival, Europrix, eAward, and Games for Change.Tags: Austria, prosthetics, Social Impact, video games