Op Gamasutra: Applying Positive Psychology To Games

“PERMA principles are what human beings do for their own sake when they’re free beings. They are also measurable, teachable and gameable.”
Positive emotion, Engagement, Relationships, Meaning, and Achievement = PERMA

(Ben Swayer) “One of the things that we talk about in video games, and in the serious games space, is this notion that games are these incredible petri dishes where we can control variables, including purity of play, and how complex it is. Or, for example, building games about systems that interact in the real world but pulling them into a game, so that we can explore those systems without some of the noise that gets generated.
It’s kind of interesting that you talk about looking for that purity of play, because I think that’s something that’s important to the serious games space in terms of looking for ways we measure things. But also, sometimes to gamers, I often have to say to teachers with games “You have to understand that gamers can look through so many different variables, and right into the mechanics of the game.” Is that where we’re going to head with your work? A set of PERMA mechanics that become game mechanics?”

“Going back to something like resilience, I’ve always found that gaming gives you a huge sense of resilience in that it teaches you “Oh, I failed? I’m going to try again!” That sort of trial and error process, in getting through a hard challenge in a game, may actually be a form of resilience training. There’s no empirical proof, but it’s interesting to see the science starting to move into this, where we’ll really be able to figure out how to do this. “

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