Video-Game Shares One Family’s Journey With Cancer
Video-games are usually seen as entertainment. As well as offering educational and skills side benefits, they can also be a way to share life’s challenges. Similar to how books and films powerfully tell stories of loss and hope, video-games offer a comparable, yet distinct, experience.
That Dragon, Cancer is a game in development that tells the story of one family’s struggle with cancer in their young son. In the developer’s words, “we created That Dragon, Cancer to tell the story of our son Joel and his 4-year fight against cancer. Our desire is to craft an adventure game that is poetic, playful, full of imagination and of hope. This is how we choose to honor him and his memory.”
We spoke to father and developer of the game Ryan Green about That Dragon, Cancer recently, and he explained how the game was progressing along with his motivation for creating it.
The game is played in first person perspective and follows different scenes that take the player through the different stages of their story. Sometimes this is in the hospital, sometimes at the park and sometimes at home.
One potential value of an interactive experience like this, as opposed to a film or book covering the same topic, is that the player is invited to play a part in the story and live in the world with the family.
The result is an experience that is emotional and engaging on a variety of levels. Perhaps one surprising aspect is the sense of hope it communicates, alongside the challenge and sadness of the story.
Video-games like these offer a unique cultural contribution and an entirely fresh way to tell stories and engage in difficult subjects.
You can contribute to the project via their new Kickstarter appeal.