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Title: This is NOT right.
Posted: March 13, 2008 (01:22 PM)
I was surfing CNN and I caught an interesting headline out of the corner of my eye. "Feelings of depression? Nuke 'em!"

Well, as someone who's suffered from clinical depression most of her life, I was curious. I click over.. and I find this article.

The relevant part:

You think you may be suffering from depression and visit a psychiatrist to have your condition assessed.

Rather than being given a form to complete, or asked a series of probing questions about dreams and your relationship with your mother, you are instead kitted out with a rocket launcher, ray gun, jet-pack and night vision goggles and sent forth to do battle against marauding aliens, the level of skill you bring to your mission determining the severity of your illness.

It sounds like a slightly surreal, bad-taste comedy sketch. According to a team at the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) in Bethesda, Maryland, however, a video-game based on the above scenario could provide crucial clues not only in diagnosing depression, but also in gauging the severity of that depression.

The game in question is Duke Nukem, a hugely popular virtual reality adventure in which the eponymous Duke -- a muscular, crop-haired, womanizing macho-man in the Arnold Schwarzenegger mold -- defends the earth, and in particular its female inhabitants, against an unpleasant array of aliens, mutants and other physically malformed aggressors.

Under the accompanying photo, it stated: "The research is based on Duke Nukem, a popular video game."

Um. Yeah. I'd say that Duke Nukem is more likely to CAUSE depression, as people who actually care about the franchise are STILL waiting for Duke Nukem Forever.

Do I think the idea has merit? Potentially, as one of SEVERAL diagnostic tools. Do I think this was a good choice for the research? Not particularly. If they want to use a game to measure navigational ability and spacial perception, then see if there's a correlation between those factors and depression? I'm sure we can give them much better options.

(Note: The article calls DN a "virtual reality game" and calls it popular, the only thing I can think is maybe they have access to the DNF builds or something, because the last released game is over what, 15 years old now? Or maybe it was the last DN game released, I have no idea.)

HalonUser: Halon
Posted: March 13, 2008 (03:49 PM)
DN isn't always good for you:


pupUser: pup
Posted: March 14, 2008 (11:23 AM)
That was good. That lady deserves that harassment just for taking LOTR Online so seriously.

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