The Magi Kickstarts Fantasy Epic To Teach Kids About Diabetes

The Magi Kickstarts Fantasy Epic To Teach Kids About Diabetes

No matter how epic your destiny, sound blood sugar management is a must.

Adam Grantham's always wanted to make a game that helped people better understand diabetes, and his stake in this is personal: he's had type 1 for over 19 years. Hence The Magi and the Sleeping Star, a fantasy game with a twist. You play as a descendant of the Magi of old, tasked with defeating an ancient, reborn king. However you suffer from type 1 diabetes, and that means you need to master your blood sugar as well as your arcane powers. Grantham hopes that, by playing the game, kids with diabetes will feel more empowered to deal with the disease.

The prototype has already been built - the alpha footage is what you're looking at now - and Grantham's hoping a successful Kickstarter will let him take his project to public release. He's looking for $200,000, and there's 29 days to go.

"I knew from the beginning that if the game wasn't fun, it wasn't going to be teaching anyone anything," says Grantham. "So we designed a core game that was strong enough to stand alone as an exciting, evocative adventure," and then tied in a real-time blood sugar simulation, making managing the disease part of the process.

You'll need to, and fast, since - although you live in a magical Steampunk-esque land with technology at your disposal, including a robot pal - King Merodach is just a little bigger than you might be expecting. In fact, he's a cyborg dinosaur with powers stolen from a fallen star. Plus he has a robot army on his side. Just so you know.

Think this one's for you? Hie thee to Kickstarter and find out more.

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But we already have Captain Novolin to teach us about Diabetus! I don't know, trying to pass a message ham fisted while putting on the guise of something else like a fantasy "epic" seems... misleading. I don't quite understand how fighting a gigantic cyborg bipedal Triceratops is meant to be an allegory for Diabetes.

If you simply played this game straight, maybe I wouldn't be so hard on it. But it's trying to convey a message in the most impractical way possible. There can't be subtly in it either, in order to get the message across while all this magic and monsters is going around, the characters will literally have to spell out their intent that "Diabetus is bad, you should remember to treat it".

Watching the actual demo footage on Kickstarter had me concerned. The only indicator as to what level your blood sugar is on is a selection in the pause menu. I feel like pausing the game in the middle of combat to eat food, monitor your blood level, estimate how much insulin you need to take and trying to balance your insulin level so that it is "ideal," will absolutely destroy any sort of pacing if you are potentially needing to do his every other fight. Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of creating a fun game that also teaches people about a particular subject, but I feel that this may be going about it in the wrong way.

dragongit:

If you simply played this game straight, maybe I wouldn't be so hard on it. But it's trying to convey a message in the most impractical way possible. There can't be subtly in it either, in order to get the message across while all this magic and monsters is going around, the characters will literally have to spell out their intent that "Diabetus is bad, you should remember to treat it".

It's not trying to "convey a message". It's not trying to spread awareness that diabetes sucks. It's a practical tool for kids with diabetes to practice adjusting their blood sugar, so they don't go into a hypoglycemic coma and die.

Now if you are a kid, would you rather play a game where you adjust your blood sugar to get an advantage in a fight with an epic monster, or a game where you have to get through the mundane every day life activities of going to school and doing your homework?

Seriously, next time spend as much time reading the actual story as you do writing your critical post.

Kid likes game so much kid forgets to take insulin shot.

The ultimate irony.

I don't think it should have been quite so on the nose. You could have played a character who was from a different magical dimension and who needed to take a certain "dust" or "potion" so their magic would not run amok. You see what sense does Diabetes make in a magical world where you can literally heal anything and cast fire down from the sky?

The intent of "The better you take care of yourself the better you fight" is nice but the execution is Mister Mackey level of motivation.

I'm going on an insulin pump.. Does that mean I win the game preemptively? Kudos for trying to bring some focus to diabetes though, I guess.

RoadRedemptionDev:

dragongit:

If you simply played this game straight, maybe I wouldn't be so hard on it. But it's trying to convey a message in the most impractical way possible. There can't be subtly in it either, in order to get the message across while all this magic and monsters is going around, the characters will literally have to spell out their intent that "Diabetus is bad, you should remember to treat it".

It's not trying to "convey a message". It's not trying to spread awareness that diabetes sucks. It's a practical tool for kids with diabetes to practice adjusting their blood sugar, so they don't go into a hypoglycemic coma and die.

Now if you are a kid, would you rather play a game where you adjust your blood sugar to get an advantage in a fight with an epic monster, or a game where you have to get through the mundane every day life activities of going to school and doing your homework?

Seriously, next time spend as much time reading the actual story as you do writing your critical post.

Neither, because a Diabetic isn't going to be interested in dealing with a game that is ham-fisting the mechanic in for the sake of having the mechanic in there. And unlike you (who I doubt has any strong connection to the illness at hand), I'm actually quite familiar with it, as a few friends and family members have it.

If you want Practical, this isn't it. It's a painfully basic facsimile that tries to mimic the very basic concept of handling blood glucose levels. From what I've seen, it doesn't take into account activity levels, how receptive the body is at the area of injection, or all the things that REALLY matter with controlling it. Even something as bloody simple as "Peanut Butter" is lacking in this list, or the narrowly enforced range of "90-110" being the good level. Last I've heard from my siblings doctors, 150 is still more than perfectly fine.

 

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