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Destiny's Sword Team Dives into the Psychology of the Game

The latest Destiny's Sword developer blog has gone live on the game's official site. This time devs turn their attention to one of the most frequently asked questions: Why explore psychological effects on characters in an MMO? It began when creative director Ken Hall was interviewing British WWII veterans about the trauma they endured both during the war and in their lives afterward.

The scars of combat and trauma can last a lifetime, and as a team, we felt that our entertainment could do a better job of depicting these long term consequences. In Destiny’s Sword we saw an opportunity to explore some of these consequences in a way that raises the profile of mental health for everyone.

Along with the physical effects of combat, a character’s emotional state will also affect their performance. Additionally, what a character experiences, both in combat and also in the metagame, will affect the way they think and feel. It’s a circular relationship that has the player’s fingerprints all over it.

This, of course, leads fans to wonder how it can be "fun" to have psychological factors present in a game. "Many daily events for characters are positive experiences, and players are rewarded for empathic interactions with their characters and other players, rather than penalized for their mistakes."

To ensure that the effects of combat are portrayed correctly and compassionately, the team has worked with a trio of charities including Take This, Alda Communications Training and Spartan Wellness.

You can read the extensive blog post on the Destiny's Sword site.

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Suzie Ford / Suzie is the Associate Editor and News Manager at MMORPG.com. Follow her on Twitter @MMORPGMom

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