Eyelander: a therapeutic video game
Eyelander is an online game for children and young people with visual field loss caused by problems with how the brain processes vision.
The game incorporates behavioural therapy that has been designed to improve the player’s speed and accuracy when finding objects. You can play the game on any (modern) web browser, with a mouse and keyboard.
Who is Eyelander for?
Eyelander was designed with and for children and young people with visual field loss caused by brain injury. Common causes of this type of visual field loss are hemianopia (loss of vision to one side) and cerebral vision impairment (difficulty in processing and interpreting visual information). Playing the game does require some functional vision and some simple computer skills.
What is visual field loss?
The visual field is the entire space that a person can see around them without moving their eyes. If areas of the brain that are involved in processing vision become impaired due to injury or some other factor it can result in a partial or whole loss of the visual field. This visual field loss is not experienced as darkness but is simply not seen in the same way that we cannot see behind us without moving our head and eyes.
Why is Eyelander useful for people with visual field loss?
We do not expect playing Eyelander to improve your visual field but we do expect it to improve your functional vision by changing the way you move your eyes when searching for objects around you. There is good evidence that completing lots of visual exercises such as those found in Eyelander can improve performance on everyday tasks such as finding objects on a crowded desk or moving around more safely in a busy environment.
About the Eyelander Project
The project is coordinated by WESC Foundation with our academic partner (University of Lincoln), our game development partner (Mutant Labs Ltd.), and our web development partner (D2 Creative Ltd.). It is jointly funded by Comic Relief and the Paul Hamlyn Foundation as a Tech for Good award.
Results of a pilot study were released in February 2019 and published in the American Foundation for the Blind’s Journal of Visual Impairment and Blindness.