I guess I could see Minecraft working as a form of Therapy. If you put it to peaceful, it's very relaxing, building.
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My avatar-Madison Gotha. She knows various weapons, she's a mage/sage, and is somewhat immortal. Madison has the capability of taming and communicating monsters, a genetic trait passed down by her father. 26 physically, 1400-something mentally, and a Lofty Peakian/Zenithian mix. Doesn't really like being called an elf and hates being called human..
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This was raised before, and the thread blew up in no time into a full on troll-fest, since a lot of Minecrafters can't express empathy for people who might have mental illness or who have suffered trauma. It was really, really unpleasant.
Having said that, there was discussion about it being used for PTSD and OCD as a means of allowing a person to have a temporary break from obsessive thinking and negative self-talk. It's not a long term solution, but for someone going through a crisis, it can be useful during that transition back to normal thinking.
Risks would be associated with online play, where the patient could encounter trolls and bullies, worsening their state, or in becoming addicted to single player, which could exacerbate isolation. But there haven't been any studies done, that I know of.
Yeah the only thing I would be worried about is some people will play games by themselves, but they'll start secluding themselves from everyone else too, and I only know this cause my brother is autistic and he doesn't like playing with other people on minecraft unless it's me xD
I have seen programs that do group therapy for children with social skill deficits, and there are also groups for children with autism. There is also a great talk given that incorporates mindfulness and concentration into Minecraft gameplay. I am not saying to only use Minecraft as therapy, but to use it as a tool within therapy (as in, one would still be seeing a counselor/therapist).
The game allows them to participate in parallel play, or work on projects together. I say this because kids still play with sand or legos as a means to play therapy, but I feel they are more interested in technology and video games. Minecraft would allow the same kind of creative projection onto a relatively blank slate, and there are numerous modes it could be played in.
I also see the possibility of creating all of the different assessment measures (like the BDI) in the game, so it would be a more engaging "adventure" than answering simple survey questions. There is a game called "Sparx" that attempted to convert surveys and skill building into a RPG style game, but it is very clunky and non-engaging.
Well I'm ADHD and my brother is autistic my sister is bipolar my mom is in school to become an OT and so am I so I think I can say this. Minecraft just like most things has it's ups and it's downs. It can help autistic people calm down (I know this because of my brother) but that is just with autism. My sister hates the game and it just makes her get stressed out when she plays. It helps me stay foucesed on what I'm doing and helps with my OCPD aswell. but just like everything it all depends on the person but long story short for some people yes others no. Hope I helped
As others have said, maybe in single player in Peaceful mode... Creepers griefing your house can be pretty frustrating. For this reason I usually just play on servers that have mobGriefing set to false. Also, I'll just go ahead and say, the Minecraft community is the worst I've seen. And I say this as someone who has received death threats on tons of games such as Starcraft and Guild Wars, and even been kind of infamous in some online communities. The Minecraft community is a culture that celebrates mediocrity and encourages griefers and trolls to ruin everyone else's good time. Even as a moderator on a server I could not deal with the community. And I'm the type of guy who just laughs when called a racial slur and threatened with death. That should tell you something about how bad this community really is when people like me would rather play Starcraft which is essentially a trolling contest.
It is interesting to note that everyone is assuming that Minecraft would be the therapy. It seems it is important to delineate this if I were to ever actually use Minecraft in the the therapy room.
I agree that the community can be challenging - all video game communities seem to be heading down this road. At the same time, griefing/trolling does indicate some level of empathy, though it is in a negative context. In ruining others' experience, the troll/griefer understands how someone will respond, indicating they know how others would feel if X happened to their world. That in itself is clinical material.
Again, I would be looking to use Minecraft similar to how sand tables are used today in therapy.
Whenever I have a particularly stressful day I find mining for hours on end to be quite relaxing.
That is part of what I am looking into. It could be said that the mining invokes a state of "mindfulness" where you are concentrating on the block in front of you, and waiting for what is behind it. Essentially, this is one form of meditation.