A Fife-based designer who has overcome childhood abuse is channelling his efforts into the creation of a new game to help others deal with mental health issues.
Calum Robb, 33, from Wormit, is working on his honours project, ‘Roykfern: A Musical Narrative Adventure’ with volunteer students and professionals as part of his fourth year at Abertay University.
The team are due to graduate this summer and with all members keen to work in the industry full-time and see their game come to fruition, Calum has set up a Kickstarter fundraiser to help them achieve their goal.
Chapter one of the game should be finished by this summer and Calum and the team at Arrow Games have set an initial funding target of £50,000 to develop it and make it available.
Calum feels his experience has shaped a game that will resonate with many people.
“When I was 11 I was sexually abused and never dealt with it until late 2019.
“For 22 years I’ve lived with depression, anxiety and panic attacks but would self-medicate with alcohol and drugs.
“I am now clean and sober and have found meditation and music, among other things, help me live with what happened and how to live with my mental health in a positive way.
“I wanted to use elements of music and meditation in Roykfern, and show how I deal with depression and anxiety in a beautifully crafted game, whilst not being clinical and still having mass appeal.
“The game is not aimed to be a cure-all, or to be focused on mental health, but is used to develop the main character’s story, who is based on myself and the journey I’ve gone through – how you can’t cure depression but live with it by finding things that help you.”
He continued: “If one person out of thousands takes something from it then I feel like I’ve achieved a lot.
“I also want to create games with my team that raise more social awareness without thinking about profit all the time.
“The end goal is to be able to start a social enterprise if we ever get to sell the game and give back to the community with workshops, charitable donations and raise more awareness of mental health and other issues we find important.”
More information is available via the Kickstarter page: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/arrowgames/roykfern-a-musical-narrative-adventure.