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Video game highlights importance of mental health

Screenshot from Ratchet And Clank: Rift Apart
Screenshot from Ratchet And Clank: Rift Apart Image credit: washingtonpost.com

A new hotly anticipated video game has taken the subject of mental health head on by adding focus on subjects such as anxiety and self-esteem in its storyline.

In Ratchet And Clank: Rift Apart the two leading characters, which have had gamers glued to their joypads for almost 20 years, are introduced to a couple of new friends.

Alien Ratchet and his robot sidekick Clank are joined by Rivet and Kit, one of their new buddies has their own challenges to overcome.

Kit, a robot built for destruction purposes, lives an isolated life suffering from anxiety and needs to build her confidence.

As the game unfolds she starts to make choices for herself and build new friendships, but she is not the only character who has issues with their mental health in the game.

Ratchet also has anxiety, he’s concerned he won’t be able to achieve the legacy of his ancestors and let the family down.

Luckily they have support from Rivet and Clank to boost their morale.

In the real life world game designers Insomniac, who develop the Ratchet And Clank series, have been recognised for providing commitment to their workers’ wellbeing.

With most games the final few weeks before release is known as “The Crunch” when staff can feel stressed and under pressured.

However game designer Grant Parker said on Twitter: ‘I'd appreciate ppl sharing this positive. Because it's important. #RatchetPS5 is at 89 avg score & I can't speak for anyone on the team but myself, but I didn't crunch once. 40h weeks the whole time. It is possible to work on a great game w/o suffering.’

Lindsay Thompson, an animator at Insomniac, said: I didn't crunch once, entire production. A couple late nights here and there finishing something up, but COMPLETELY CRUNCH FREE. It is possible. Team wellness lets the creativity flow free.’

Ratchet And Clank: Rift Apart is available now for PlayStation 5.