In “Adventures With Anxiety” you play the role of someone’s anxiety, personified as a wolf. The game allows users to explore a challenging topic through a unique perspective.
"Adventures With Anxiety" is a free online game that can be described as interactive fiction. It was developed by Nicky Case and published in 2019. You can download and play the game for free from this website.
A note for teachers about playing the game in class
The game takes approximately 30 minutes to complete.
A recommended approach is to first discuss the questions related to the word “anxiety” and the game title, and then divide students into pairs before playing the game. After completing the game, a discussion in smaller groups could be followed by a plenary session to reflect upon the choices students made while playing, and how these choices affect the outcome of the story. As this game deals with a potentially disturbing subject, it is recommended to play the game in a classroom setting with a teacher present.
Reflect on the following questions before playing the game:
- In your own words, how would you explain the term "anxiety"?
- Comment on how anxiety can be both visible and invisible.
- Does the title "Adventures With Anxiety" give you a positive or negative feeling? Explain your answer.
Complete these tasks after playing the game:
- In your role as the wolf, list some of the ways in which you inflicted anxiety on your human?
- How did you “win” each round as the wolf?
- Why do you think the game developer chose a wolf to personify anxiety?
- In groups, discuss the endings to your game. What were the similarities/differences?
Additional task/further reading:
- In small groups, discuss the difficulties young people face today. What difficulties can you identify, and what are their causes? How can we, as a society, help combat these difficulties? Make a podcast (using Screencast-O-Matic, Audacity or any tool that lets you record audio) in which you discuss these questions as a group.
- Read the blog entry "Fighting Anxiety and Stigma" and complete the tasks.