JMIR Serious Games

A multidisciplinary journal on gaming and gamification including simulation and immersive virtual reality for health education/promotion, teaching, medicine, rehabilitation, and social change

Editor-in-Chief:

Nabil Zary, MD, PhD, Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Science, Dubai, UAE


Impact Factor 4.14

JMIR Serious Games (JSG, ISSN 2291-9279; Impact Factor: 4.14) is a multidisciplinary journal devoted to computer/web/virtual reality/mobile applications that incorporate elements of gaming, gamification or novel hardware platforms such as virtual reality headsets or Microsoft Kinect to solve serious problems such as health behavior change, physical exercise promotion (exergaming), medical rehabilitation, diagnosis and treatment of psychological/psychiatric disorders, medical education, health promotion, teaching and education, or social change. The journal also considers commentary and research in the fields of video games violence and video games addiction.

JMIR Serious Games is indexed in PubMed, PubMed Central, DOAJ, Scopus, and SCIE/Web of Science. In June 2021, JSG received an impact factor of 4.14. JSG has also been accepted for indexing in PsycINFO.

Recent Articles

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Sexually transmitted infections and unintended pregnancies among young people remain public health concerns in many countries. To date, interventions that address these concerns have had limited success. Serious games are increasingly being used as educational tools in health and professional public education. Although acknowledged as having great potential, few studies have evaluated the use of serious games in sexual health education among young people, and to date, there have been no published reviews of these studies.

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Game Design and Efficacy of Game Elements

Although in many contexts unsuccessful games targeting learning, social interaction, or behavioral change have few downsides, when covering a sensitive domain such as mental health (MH), care must be taken to avoid harm and stigmatization of people who live with MH conditions. As a result, evaluation of the game to identify benefits and risks is crucial in understanding the game’s success; however, assessment of these apps is often compared with the nongame control condition, resulting in findings specifically regarding entertainment value and user preferences. Research exploring the design process, integrating field experts, and guidelines for designing a successful serious game for sensitive topics is limited.

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Reviews

Virtual reality (VR) is a computer technology that immerses a user in a completely different reality. The application of VR in acute pain settings is well established. However, in chronic pain, the applications and outcome parameters influenced by VR are less clear.

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JMIR Theme Issue: COVID-19 Special Issue

The pandemic has highlighted the importance of low-threshold opportunities for exercise and physical activity. At the beginning of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic led to many restrictions, which affected seniors in care facilities in the form of severe isolation. The isolation led, among other things, to a lack of exercise, which has led to a multitude of negative effects for this target group. Serious games can potentially help by being used anywhere at any time to strengthen skills with few resources.

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Games and Gamification for Health

People with severe mental illness (SMI) face discriminatory situations because of prejudice toward them, even among health care personnel. Escape rooms can be a novel educational strategy for learning about and empathizing with SMI, thus reducing stigma among health care students.

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Gamification

Although the pursuit of improved cognitive function through working memory training has been the subject of decades of research, the recent growth in commercial adaptations of classic working memory tasks in the form of gamified apps warrants additional scrutiny. In particular, the emergence of virtual reality as a platform for cognitive training presents opportunities for the use of novel visual features.

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Serious Games for Health and Medicine

Although nearly one-third of the world’s disease burden requires surgical care, only a small proportion of digital health applications are directly used in the surgical field. In the coming decades, the application of augmented reality (AR) with a new generation of optical-see-through head-mounted displays (OST-HMDs) like the HoloLens (Microsoft Corp) has the potential to bring digital health into the surgical field. However, for the application to be performed on a living person, proof of performance must first be provided due to regulatory requirements. In this regard, cadaver studies could provide initial evidence.

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Serious Games for Education

Graduate education in modern diplomacy poses several challenges, as it requires several competencies to be developed before diplomatic service is joined. Incorporation of simulation games can have a positive impact on the design of international relations and diplomacy learning process. We have designed a novel role play game (MAEDRI) to simulate part of the activities of a typical Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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Game Addiction and Other Unintended Consequences

Gambling within the world of gaming is an emerging phenomenon that may share common conceptual characteristics with traditional forms of gambling. The current literature suggests a higher degree of problematic behaviors in this gambling pattern, but studies are few, prompting for further research regarding individual characteristics and comorbid conditions associated with this activity.

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Serious Games for Education

Many teachers consider it challenging to teach children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in an inclusive classroom due to their unique needs and challenges. The integration of information communication technology (ICT) in the education system allows children with ASD to improve their learning. However, these ICT tools should meet their needs to lead a productive life.

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Games for Rehabilitation

Visual–perceptual defects in children can negatively affect their ability to perform activities of daily living. Conventional rehabilitation training for correcting visual–perceptual defects has limited training patterns and limited interactivity, which makes motivation difficult to sustain.

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