Jedi wannabe creates mind-controlled video game
A “Star Wars” fan has made a video game that lets players throw virtual objects with their minds, but he’s having trouble selling it because people don’t believe it works.
“One blogger that I reached out to accused me of fabricating the entire thing,” said Lat Ware, a 28-year-old game developer in Sunnyvale, Calif.
But Ware assures us that “Throw Trucks With Your Mind!,” the game he is trying to fund on Kickstarter, is no hoax.
Ware let VentureBeat test the game, and after the demo, the tech website’s reporter proclaimed he was a Jedi Master. There is also video of a very early version of the game in action with clips of people playing and their reactions.
“The game really speaks for itself once you play it,” he said.
The game is much like a first-person shooter with users controlling movements with their computer keyboard and mouse, Ware said. But when it comes time to throw objects, players use a NeuroSky headset that measures users’ brainwaves. The more focused players get, the better control they’ll have over the objects they’re trying to move.
“It’s a learnable skill, people get better at it,” he said, adding that after two hours of playing, most players are able to throw as many as three objects at the same time.
Ware said he was introduced to neuro feedback therapy technology as a child when he took the therapy for his attention-deficit disorder. He followed the technology, and when NeuroSky announced consumer versions of their headsets, Ware decided to combine the technology with his background in game development and love for “Star Wars.”
[For the record, 2:12 p.m. March 5: An earlier version of this post incorrectly said Ware was introduced to NeuroSky as a child.]
“I wanted to make the ultimate Jedi game,” he said.
The game is entertaining, but Ware said it also has therapeutic benefits for people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, anxiety and depression.
“This is actual neuro feedback therapy, it’s just wrapped up into awesome competitive multiplayer,” he said. “The therapy only works if people want to do it, and people want to crush people with their minds.”
To get the game and a NeuroSky headset, users must pledge at least $125. If funded, Ware is promising the game, which will work with Windows and Mac OS X, will come out one year from now at the latest or as early as six months from now if everything goes perfectly.
But with less than two weeks to go before the funding period expires, Ware’s project has only raised about $21,000, far short of the funding goal of $40,000.
Ware admits he’s feeling the pressure, but he plans to add more Kickstarter rewards besides giving away the game and the headset and keep campaigning to get more funds.
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