Oh Well, Whatever: Nevermind

By Jim Rossignol on September 5th, 2012 at 5:00 pm.

One day, perhaps, all games will respond biometrically. For now, though, we get to examine the experiments and the prototypes, and this is one such project: Nevermind is a student game which involves thirteen students at the University Of Southern California. Their idea is to create a horror experience which you must keep calm to win against. The higher your heart-rate goes, the harder it gets. The calmer you remain, the easier the game will be on you. Of course there’s hardware involved, because you need a USB-pluggable biometric heartrate monitor doohickey, but as they point out on their IndieGoGo campaign, you can also just buy the hardware from Amazon, should you want to try your luck against Nevermind’s horrors. Oh, and you’ll need to support that aforementioned campaign to actually get the game, of course.

The developers discuss their gaming in more detail in a fascinating “making of” video, which you can see below. There’s a bunch more on the site.


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  1. djbriandamage says:

    What a cool idea. It’d be a great way to condition yourself to act reliably and controlled under duress.

    This technology has the potential to do great good – some self defence classes get its students to scream profanities at eachother so that they can be exposed to it and won’t be shocked when challenged.

    Also, that’s a rather curt headline you picked, Jim.

  2. Terragot says:

    Oh, you think fear is your ally. You merely adopted the fear. I was born in it, molded by it. I didn’t see the calm until I was already a man. By then, it was nothing to me but boring!

    The fear betrays you because it belong to Frictional.

  3. Javier says:

    It is said, if you confront Nevermind with imperfect courage, it will utterly annihilate your soul.

  4. JoeFX69 says:

    Gaming Nirvana???

  5. Mr. Mister says:

    I want this applied to MOBAs.

    • lasikbear says:

      “u experiencing a heightened heart-rate bro?”

      • Mr. Mister says:

        nope, never played any MOBA.

        Now that I think about it, it would be interesting to see this applied the opposite way:

        “Can’t get past that segment? 20 pushups per difficulty reduction!”

  6. bowlingotter says:

    What a brilliant idea. Could you imagine if Amnesia got HARDER when you became frightened? I would love to see where this idea could go.

  7. ElvisMZ says:

    Someone told me that with the lights out, it’s less dangerous

  8. SuperNashwanPower says:

    Can it differentiate between a high heart rate due to being scared and wanting to rage-quit? Because if it ramps up the difficulty when it detects you’re about to punch your computer, it could get expensive.

  9. JenkNekro says:

    I was in the class that made this game. In fact, I should have been on this team but the professor screwed me out of it. This game is amazing and I don’t think I’m ever getting over not working on it, go support it

  10. Shralla says:

    So Nintendo proposes this two years ago and everybody laughs at them, and now you have to buy an external peripheral to play ONE GAME, and it’s suddenly a great idea?

  11. Hyoscine says:

    Looks amazing, though cue Daily Mail headline about the game you win by desensitizing yourself to it…

  12. GameCat says:

    Only hard games can make my heart beat faster. That feel when you and that freaking gargoyle from Dark Souls have both tiny amount of HP and you hit first and after 2 days of playing you finally kill that asshole. My heart was pounding like crazy. But in horror games like Amnesia? Nope.

  13. BestFriends4Ever says:

    Either I’m deaf or their sound has been fornicated.

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