Developed by Holyoake through a $218,000 State Government grant, DRUMBEAT Quest is a computer game that encourages young people to talk with counsellors while building online communities.
Mr Simpson said young people aged eight to 17 used the game in the company of professionals who could provide advice and support on a range of difficult social issues.
“Playing a computer game is a really safe feeling for young people and they feel comfortable using the challenges in the game and relating them to real life,” he said.
“For instance, the game offers them quick fix solutions to beat a monster but it depletes the player’s health. And if they use reason rather than aggression to overcome a challenge, they get further in the game.
“It puts the fate of a virtual community in the hands of the young person, who can strengthen the community by rescuing members trapped in drug abuse or despair, cleaning the environment or rebuilding infrastructure.”
It is based on Holyoake’s award-winning DRUMBEAT program, which employs rhythm-based drum playing exercises to help people of all ages.
“This is a WA success story, made in Australia, with global potential,” the Minister said.
The game can be used as a resource in schools, prisons, youth services, refugee centres, child trauma services, youth justice and child protection services.