17-year-old’s Fractured Minds mental health puzzle game debuts on PC and consoles

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Fractured Minds, a first-person puzzle adventure game highlighting the impact of mental health issues, has launched digitally on the PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.

The title comes from Emily Mitchell, a 17-year-old who wanted to make a game about severe anxiety and depression. She found solace through game development, and she won the 2017 BAFTA Young Games Designers award.

Now the game has been spruced up and published by Wired Productions, which is making it available for $1.99. 80% of the proceeds are going to Mitchell, who lives in Watford, United Kingdom, and Safe In Our World, a new games industry charity dedicated to raising and supporting mental health awareness. It is one of a number of games — like Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice — that are tackling the difficult subject of mental illness.

Above: Fractured Minds creator Emily Mitchell

Image Credit: Wired Productions

Inspired by Mitchell’s personal journey through severe anxiety, Fractured Minds seeks to create greater understanding and stand in solidarity with mental health sufferers around the world. Players will embark on a personal and emotional journey through the human psyche.

Exploring atmospheric and thought-provoking chapters, each symbolizing a different aspect or challenge associated with mental health — from isolation to anxiety, with everyday situations becoming distorted beyond recognition.

“I created Fractured Minds to help those who suffer from anxiety and other mental health issues feel they’re not alone,” said Mitchell, in a statement. “The effects of illness can be invisible from the outside, yet debilitating to those affected, so it’s important to continue raising awareness and offering support. I am grateful for the support I’ve received and want to help others however I can.”

Above: Fractured Minds depicts different moods.

Image Credit: Wired Productions

Safe In Our World is a new mental health charity for the video games community with the goal of raising awareness of mental health issues among gamers and creators and affecting positive change within the industry. Supported by industry luminaries and ambassadors across the world, its mission is to create a digital destination where sufferers can seek help, gain access to resources and information, and discover stories from real people within and surrounding the games industry.

“Fractured Minds represents the best of what inspired talent can aspire to offer to the world, and Safe In Our World is honored to be a beneficiary as we support Emily and her poignant project,” said Gina Jackson, trustee for Safe In Our World, in a statement. “We are passionate about shedding light and destigmatizing mental health conditions while helping the gaming community to come together in support of one another.”

The indie game has interactive environments with challenges and puzzles across six levels, each inspired by real-life obstacles. You can explore the emotions surrounding emptiness, anxiety, depression and paranoia with hope. The game has an immersive soundtrack including Silence from Kai Engel.

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