New Biometric Headset Punishes Gamer Rage

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So apparently Dr. Evil went into the video game industry? Because this sounds almost cartoonishly diabolical. Who would buy this?

I realize this is still in the early stages of development so the final concept may need more tweaking, but I don't understand the logic behind increasing the game challenge when the player becomes stressed as a way of DECREASING gamer rage.

This sounds more like a system designed to channel rage into its purest form.

I did a little more digging, because this didn't make sense to me and from looking at the linked sources, I got the wrong idea from reading the article. Still not sure if it would actually work to "solve" gamer rage, but it sounds a little less crazy now.

The developer designed a simple FPS for use with his prototype which responds to the player's biometrics by increasing the threat level. From the sound of it, in order to successfully play the game, the gamer needs to maintain control of his stress levels, as measured by heart rate. If his heart rate gets too high, the game becomes very hard to "punish" his response. Theoretically, repeated sessions with this simple game could train you to stay in better control of your heart rate under stress. I'm not convinced it would actually reduce your frustration levels, but you could learn to control your body's response to frustration using the biofeedback provided by the device and in-game experience.

The basic idea of using bio-feedback to help control physiological response is pretty sound and it might work as a form of therapy for gamers looking for a way to reduce their rage in a controlled environment. On the other hand, adding this as a game feature in an actual video game (i.e. "a game that can smell your fear"), especially a multi-player game, and you would be creating the opposite experience - Dark Souls on steroids. Without the over-arching therapeutic goal, it would be an exercise in frustration for its own sake. Some gamers would love it for the extreme challenge, others would hate it for making a difficult experience even harder. And knowing the game was picking on you personally because of your stress level would make it that much worse.

Not my cup of tea, frankly.

I can see applications for this when it comes to helping people manage stress and anger, but in the entertainment market I seriously doubt anyone would want to wear a device that tells them how to play essentially.

You need positive reinforcement to get people to chill out. Otherwise I doubt this would work for anything but maybe single player Horror games.

Here I was hoping it would violently Tazer the fourteen year olds who shout racist slurs in my ear.

Unless it let's us do this kind of thing ala this...

I am supremely uninterested in this. As others have already said, an increase in heart rate is by no means an indication of of stress levels. As Stewie Griffon once said, "Either they're doing the do, or the fatman's watching batman!". It needs to be much more precise, and much more capable than some modified version of the wii's heartbeat sensor.

Also, I can't wait til some "study" uses this to prove video games cause violence either.

Simple solution...don't buy it and/or don't wear it. Problem solved! If the game requires it, ask your gran to wear it while she knits you something and looks at pictures of kittens, puppies and ducklings.

Wow, I coulda saved that dude a fortune in R&D costs. One would've thought that the better outcome would be to make the game "easier" the more stressed and angry the wearer gets, or just kill the target of their ire. That would relieve the stress, rather than exacerbating it.

..Something's really not right with this. At all.

*Xboxone thrown through living room window*


playing through xcom on impossible difficulty sometimes makes me want to snap my keyboard in half i cant imagine what would happen with that headset

Gets harder the more you get angry with it being hard?

Yeah...I can see a problem with this.

I don't the idea is brilliant: to teach self control. If you know you are angry you can calm yourself down and the game gets easier. Think what use that kind of ability would have in real life. Better and more rational decision making regardless of anger.

I can see this to be excellent therapy tool - which again will only work if the patient embraces it.
I'd like to give it a try.


Gets harder the more you get angry with it being hard?

Yeah...I can see a problem with this.

No shit. This guy is a fucking moron. Let's throw some fuel on the fire.

And just because my adrenaline is pumping and everything doesn't mean that I'm angry, or that anger doesn't help my game. Michael Jordan had his best games where his opponents antagonized him.

speaking as someone who's found themselves plugging in a game to ease a frustrated mood, only for a run of bad luck just making my mood even worse... yeah, this sounds like a recipe for disaster

This has almost certainly been mentioned every post so far...but get's harder?

All of my "wut!?"

I'm remembering that fear sensing game that was reported a few weeks ago and feel that my one complaint to that is relevant here. That being, those of us with chronic rapid heartbeats are sorta screwed. To review the way I put it last time.

Me: No, game, I'm not mad, I just have a vastly faster heart rate than the average human due to-

while the protect seems like its for people that hate themselves i'm more concerned with the kind of people that use the term "Id shooters," seriously dose anyone actually use that

This seem to work backwards. when you are calmbored it makes the game even easier, and when you are angry excited it just makes the game unplayable. my best performances in games left me literally shaking from the adrenaline afterwards. this seems to do things completely backwards.

Also, why would i buy one? Why would i want the game to be harder or to be forced to control my anger. there is a reason i get angry and suppressing it will only end badly.

while the protect seems like its for people that hate themselves i'm more concerned with the kind of people that use the term "Id shooters," seriously dose anyone actually use that

Could it be that they are ferering to ID software who seems to be making a lot of shooters

Running on pulse level huh? Then I guess I bet that by having a natural low pulse / min.

It really should be sneakily added into those gaming headsets that people use for Xbox and PS, who knows, it might be the turning point that changes a generation.

So... if your pulse quickens as a result of something other than anger - elation for example, this gizmo punishes you for it with increased difficulty? Great idea, really.

Not to mention that some people (myself included) have learned to channel their rage to enhance their reflexes, reaction time and so forth, to use it constructively. And there is no way I'll allow anyone or anything to punish me for it.

This idea is flawed... for two reasons.

1) As people have already said, making a game harder isn't going to calm someone down, it's only going to make things worse.

2) It detects heart rate? Well that's no good. Let me give an example. .. I'm not that skilled at most multiplayer shooters. So, when I manage to do something like, say, grab the enemy flag, I start hurrying toward my team base. I know that I'm quickly going to become the central target for more enemies than I can handle. The anxiety that causes makes my heart rate go through the roof. That doesn't mean I'm raging with stress, it just means I'm in a state of panic because I don't wanna let my team down. Who wants their game to get harder at a critical juncture like that?

Well, I suppose it'll only affect players who go out and buy it, and I certainly won't. But you get my meaning right?

Look at it this way: Either the player becomes aware of what the problem is tries to calm down and learn the ability to maintain relaxation, or they boil over to the point they have an aneurysm and pass away. Either way, society wins.

And now we wait for someone to mod this onto a shock collar.... Yeah I'd pay to watch that.

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