A Game That Advocates Mental Health Awareness And Pays It, Forward

It’s always exciting to know of an upcoming online game coming into the market that makes players enjoy it to the hilt and at the same time have the opportunity to learn—and earn.

And that’s exactly what the newest game in town, The Otherworlds, has to offer to avid Filipino gamers.

Adrian Ortega, founder and creator of The Otherworlds

Developed entirely on local shores by an independent company called TG Games, The Otherworlds’ promise is that it is an online game that allows players to learn and earn and at the same time play with a strong sense of advocacy, knowing that every game played has a good sense of purpose.

In short, it is an online game with a heart.

According to Adrian Ortega, founder and creator of The Otherworlds is that it is an entirely Filipino-made play-to-earn game but with a slight twist to the principles of the usual gaming platforms.

Compared to other games in the milieu, The Otherworlds promotes a strong advocacy that seeks to create awareness about the value of one’s mental health, its impact on the overall psychological state of many Filipinos currently embroiled in one of the world’s longest lockdowns ever in this debilitating Covid-19 pandemic.

How The Otherworlds works is that players will cultivate a farm and go on adventures that will allow them to get their harvest or yield that they can exchange for the game’s in-game currency called HopeCoin.

And this is where the play-to-earn element of the game comes in. Should they wish to do so, players can exchange their HopeCoin earnings into other forms of crypto or fiat currency.

It is through this option that proceeds from their HopeCoin earnings will go in the form of a donation to institutions or organizations that help promote and advocate the issue of mental health wellness.

But why choose mental health out of all other advocacies? According to Ortega, it is because he himself experienced mental health concerns like severe anxiety and mild depression in the past. “I was rushed to the hospital a few times. Different doctors of varying specialties, unfortunately, could not figure out my stroke-like symptoms,” narrates Ortega.

However, it was when he consulted a psychiatrist where he discovered that what he had experienced was more of a mental health issue more than anything else. “From that point on, I realized what had just happened. So, from being a skeptic about mental health issues, I vowed to make it my life’s mission to help other people suffering from mental health problems and in my own way, help ease, if not erase, the stigma that comes along with it,” Ortega averred.

Bound for open beta testing on December 2021, The Otherworlds is largely and mostly influenced by mental health factors. For example, the game’s three fairies are named Saab, Conch and Ness, primarily a play of words of the word subconsciousness.

The other characters are also based on known issues on mental health such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and many more. “The biggest highlight of the game is that it will raise not only awareness about mental health per se, but also provide a deeper and more substantial understanding of issues that surround mental health. This is where the gaming medium will be used to its fullest extent to make sure that players hopefully understand these conditions more,” adds Ortega.

Ortega hopes that the public, even avid gamers and parents themselves, many of whom harbor adverse feelings about gaming since they think gaming has a negative effect on their kids’ lives and mental functions, to look at gaming this time with more openness and understanding.

He said that not all games harm kids’ lives because of the supposed excessive violence. “All we want is for them to take a look at The Otherworlds, its character and its purpose. We hope to change any negative perception they may have about gaming itself and eventually, through this game, they can even encourage their kids to play it because they’re not just playing the game; they’re helping others, whether youngsters like them or even adults, cope and take care of their mental health and well-being while we are in the middle of this pandemic,” Ortega emphasized.

Though it may seem a tall order for The Otherworlds to be noticed by gamers, Ortega vowed they will work hard to get the attention the game deserves regardless of the challenges.

“We are a small indie team in TG Games. We have no fancy office, or cool high-end computers. We don’t have glorious awards or decorated titles, nor big-time corporate investors or venture capitalists backing us. We will just work hard and from the heart. We have built a small but solid community, and raise enough capital (around Php1M) in order to make this project a reality. Definitely, we will not stop there.”

Written by Village Connect

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