Using In-game Biofeedback to Induce Player Serenity

— A project for my Master’s thesis at Victoria University of Wellington, supervised by Tom White

This is a biofeedback-based exploration game. It aims to connect the game world with a player’s physiological data triggering a serene gameplay experience. The color of the game environments and some other interactions adapt to the player’s heart rate and facial expressions in real-time.

This is a one-person project for my master thesis. I proposed an affective game design criteria based on the literature review, design review, and theoretical concept. The criteria were established as a guideline to interact with the player’s physiological data using certain design strategies such as nature-related stimuli, color schemes, avoid aesthetic or mechanical distractions, and the genre of walking simulation to create a positive emotional experience. Additionally, the criteria adopted implicit-based physiological control method for biofeedback interactions.

There were two types of sensors used in this project: the Pulse sensor and the GSR sensor. To capture the facial emotions, I used the SDK from Affectiva which can be plugged in Unity.