picture of video game

Emospace: A mobile game for emotion recognition training in children with ASD

National Cheng Kung University

Yun Lee, Kuo-Hsuan Hsu, Szu-Hua Chen, I-Jou Chi, Sung-Jung Hsieh

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the United States, one in every 88 children had been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in 2012; by 2018, the prevalence increased to one in every 59 children. Due to the increasing rate and the needs of children with ASD, we decided to design a game for tablets that could help these children. After reviewing the literature, we know that children with ASD lack facial emotion recognition skills, but there is little research about how to help them with such skills. Therefore, our project uses a well-known game engine, “Unity”, to design an interesting emotion recognition game for children with ASD to improve their emotion recognition ability. Besides, every character in this game is customized by using different kinds of 3D-modeling software. This could help the children focus more on a character’s face because they tend to pay more attention to the familiar faces. We hope this game, which combines education with gameplay, could help the children with ASD become more engaged during training, increase the effectiveness of the therapy, improve their ability to recognize facial emotions, and enhance their responses to other people’s emotions.

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