Assistance FAQ

Can you help me make my game?

The project does not directly assist or arrange development of games — especially in respect to funding. We provide resources in the form of our community services and links that enable you to better locate the assistance you need to develop games.

Our best suggestion if you need help is to turn to our Listserv community, where you can usually find some good feedback and leads. We also suggest perusing the various resources on this site and in our wiki.

How do I get funding or a grant?
There are many ways to get your project funded, but Games for Health does not provide or arrange funding for projects. By investing time in our community you can learn more about where to find grant and funding information. Please see our wiki page on funding for more information.

Who can help me modify some hardware for my project?
Depending on your needs to prototype hardware or hack a specific controller for a study, we suggest turning to one of our annual conference presenters who excels in hacking and creating new forms of game hardware. Ben Heckendorn (aka Ben Heck) can be found on http://www.benheck.com/ and is the creator of several hacks we’ve shown at the conference over the past few years.

I’d like to find a researcher or research collaborator for my project.
We strongly recommend you post such a request to our online community Listserv. You may also find excellent researcher resources at the Health Games Research National Program located on the Web at http://www.healthgamesresearch.org.

I’m trying to contact major publishers, platform holders, and game developers, can you help?
We are happy to be helpful when trying to reach out to major industry stakeholders. Please email staff [at] gamesforhealth [dot] org with your needs. We do not promise to take on every request. Requests where we feel we can be effective advocates will be forwarded to our best contacts at those companies in hopes of improving your chance for a response.

I’m trying to contact RWJF about a games for health-related idea or proposal.
You can contact Robert Wood Johnson Foundation at http://www.rwjf.org. We are happy to help, when possible, but as with game industry contacts, we do not always choose to forward on information we receive. We will at every chance (time permitting) be happy to give you guidance and feedback on ideas and proposals as well, whether they be for submission to RWJF or other prominent funding sources.

I’m trying to market my game or technology and need help.
Again, we point you to our online community outlets for the best way to find help and feedback fast. Where possible, we do our best to provide feedback and advice. Please email us as much detail as you can and we’ll do our best (time permitting) to respond.

Our experience is that marketing in the games for health space really is focused on building good information sites and materials about your effort, and promoting them as widely as possible. Making it easy for people to find you and purchase your product is also critical. We’ve found that the b2b market such as payers or other organizations are extremely tough markets. Although we expect the b2b market for games for health to improve over time, you must exhibit major patience to sustain activity in what essentially is a one-on-one slow sales process arena.

Can you help me find people in this country or region working on games for health?
For help on a country-by-country basis we point you to our staff and contributors page where we maintain a growing number of recognized ambassadors in other parts of the world who can help provide some insight on how to connect with others.

What technology or game engine should I use to make my game?
This is a complex question that many projects try to rush to answer. Instead, we advise you to focus on many other aspects of the game and its intended audience first and then talk with experts in our community to see which technologies and engines they feel will best fit your goals. Picking a technology first is often a backwards approach to good game design.

I’m looking to implement some games for health in my organization and/or community. Can you help us with this?
Awesome! We’re excited to see more people who want to really use the output of our developer and research community. However, we want to caution you that although there is a lot of rich and interesting activity there are not a lot of games and projects ready for broad use.

We encourage you to join our Listserv and send out a summary of what you’re looking for, what you’re trying to do, and what resources you are bringing to the table to implement games. We suspect you’ll get a variety of responses that will help you get started. We then suggest you pilot the ideas you think are best. Learn from the pilot what will help you implement the games you like the best. We have found that just making games available gets you one level of usage, but actually encouraging and supporting play with Web and human resources creates an order of magnitude better result.

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