New Facebook game rewards players for making healthy choices

Facebook games are popular, and as the success of Nintendo’s Wii Fit proved games that promise to help you get healthy are even more popular.  The combination of the two, a Facebook game with knock-on health benefits, could potentially prove to be the most popular game ever and end up creating Skynet as a result.  

Well if we’re now doomed to live in a post-Apocalyptic future where we are hunted by murderous robots, we had better be in good health.  All that running is going to be hard to do on our all-McDonald’s-diets.  

Vancouver’s Ayogo Games, Inc. launched HealthSeeker this week, that very Facebook game that promises to help users get into better health.  (The sentient future death AI is not currently a listed feature).  As noted in the game’s press release (warning the press release includes excessive capitalization):

HealthSeeker is an innovative, unique, online experience that combines a supportive social networking environment with important information on managing diabetes.  The game utilizes the player’s own Facebook® friends as sources of inspiration and support on the road to better health.  There are MISSIONS and ACTION STEPS to help players achieve LIFESTYLE GOALS and create an opportunity to advance in the game.  These LIFESTYLE GOALS include eating more healthfully, achieving or maintaining a healthy weight, improving one’s  diabetes control and lowering cardiovascular risk factors.  As ACTION STEPS are completed and players return to report their progress, they receive experience points and other awards for their achievements.

HealthSeeker is a unique collaboration between diabetes experts and patient advocates who are on the front lines of diabetes care. It was developed by the Diabetes Hands Foundation in collaboration with Joslin Diabetes Center, with financial support provided by Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

The game is backed by medical research and with a focus on patients with diabetes, it’s goal beyond general health is to help those with the condition manage their daily situation.  As an actual doctor notes in the previously quoted press release:

“As a clinician who has been treating people with diabetes for over 30 years, I can tell you that food is often the most frustrating area of concern for people with the condition,” said Dr. Richard Jackson, an endocrinologist and Director of Medical Affairs, Healthcare Services, Joslin Diabetes Center and Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School.  “We hope this novel and engaging game will break down some of the barriers that are preventing people with diabetes from building a successful lifestyle approach to their condition.”

Now aren’t you sad that you deleted your Facebook profile?  Don’t worry I’m sure the machines will need human slaves to start with.