Experience, Empathy, and Robin

Experience, Empathy, and Robin

The first time I saw Robin as a work in progress, I was struck almost speechless. A cute little indie game is right up my alley, and a cute little indie game about Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is basically everything I’ve ever wanted. Even better: it’s made by a group of kiwi students who are the sweetest.

Robin’s main mechanic is based off of the Spoon Theory, a common way for chronically ill people to explain their limited energy reserves: as you make Robin perform actions, her energy bar empties until the only option is sleep. It’s simple but effective, and evocative of daily life for someone with Chronic Fatigue. A rapidly depleting energy bar is a part of life for us, not just a game mechanic.

However, though chronically ill people may find their lives reflected in some form in Robin, I suppose we must ask the question: can a game ever actually help able people empathize with those who are chronically ill? Can a game really make someone understand in a way that positively changes their thought patterns?

Yeah, probably.

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The Grass is Green

The Grass is Green

As I write this post I’m making pizza. Is this relevant at all? Well, no. And yes. I’m making it as a celebration of sorts, because right now I feel like a real person.

When I was young, my mum used to make pizza as a treat. I don’t know how she made it, but I’ve never had anything like her dough since. When I was sick I would always ask her to make her pizza for dinner, because somehow it always made me better again. In a way, that’s what I’m going for. But also, I just really love pizza.

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