|As educators, we are always trying to keep up with our students. We understand that technology is evolving at a rapid pace, and the way students entertain themselves in their free time is changing. Video games are an incredibly popular activity among students of all ages. To best engage with students, our aim is to blend their interests with science, to let them flex their gaming skills alongside their budding critical-engineering perspective, and best yet, to make STEM learning just a little bit competitive!
The Game Controller
The BYBGame Controller allows students to capture electrical signals from their muscles, hearts, and eyes, and use these spikes of activity to control video games!
Starting with simple games like Super Mario, Galaga, and Pong, students learn the basics of biofeedback. In medicine and physical therapy, similar systems are used to help people exercise, train motor control, and build strength!
This phenomenon is also an example of assistive technology! Not everyone is physically able to use the standard Mouse & Keyboard / video game controllers which many of us use to interface with our video games and computers. Systems like these allow for differently-abled peopled to plug in and play games using other parts of their body!
Upping the Complexity… What about 3D video games?
Students can continue to explore with the Game Controller and come up with ways to interface with all of their favorite games.
Check out this simple example above of how Will set up World of Warcraft to take input from his eyes and arms.
Program Your Own Game Controller with the Muscle SpikerShield Pro
“But 3 inputs isn’t enough to play my favorite game!”
I hear you. Me too.
Using the Muscle SpikerShield Pro and some simple code, you can take over total keyboard and mouse control.
In this example, I combined the Muscle SpikerShield Pro and Game Controller to have 9-inputs into World of Warcraft.
- Start Running
- Stop Running
- Turn Left
- Turn Right
- Target Enemy
- Change Target
- Small Attack
- Big Attack
- Heart-Beat Display
With just a bit of troubleshooting, I was able to actively play an online, multiplayer game, using only signals from my muscles and heart as inputs!
What about Multiplayer games?
Lastly, also using the Muscle SpikerShield Pro, students can control and compete in multiplayer games!
In real physical therapy, this is an effective way to motivate sedentary or injured people to exercise targetted parts of their bodies! It’s also a lot of fun… I asked Zach and Caitlin to help for just a few minutes, and then they played all the way up to over 100 points!
Get Started with the Game Controller – an Expansion kit for the Muscle SpikerBox Pro
The Game Controller is an expansion product which requires a Muscle SpikerBox Pro and a Desktop or Laptop computer running Windows or MacOS.
Check it out in our store, and put your students on a cutting edge track to come up with the biofeedback devices of the future!