Published on Thursday, 27 November 2014 00:00
Gaming is taken to a whole new immersive level with the introduction of Blood Sport. Some crazy Canadian inventors decided to revolutionize the way you donate blood and the way you game by designing a system that siphons your blood every time you die in a video game. Maybe if you die too many times in the game, you might even wind up being dead yourself in real life!
Canadian inventors Taran Chadha and Jamie Umpherson are well known for gaming-related products like Shoot the Banker, Surrogaid and Prank House. Now with Blood Sport, they are “taking the consequences of the gaming world and having them affect you in real life. So every time you get hit in the game, blood will be intravenously drawn from your arm.”
“Nowadays, most video game controllers rumble when you get shot in the game,” they explained on their Kickstarter page
, through which they’re trying to raise $250,000 CAD (SG $290,000). “That rumbling means that an electrical signal is being sent to the controller to let you know you’ve been hit. All we’re doing is re-routing that same electrical signal and using it to turn on the blood collection system.”
The objective of this is to make blood donation a more pleasant experience and to encourage people, who normally wouldn't consider blood donation, to donate their blood so that they could try out this new gaming system.
The set up is relatively simple; just before you start your game, a medical professional will insert a needle into a vein your arm that is connected to a blood flow controller. Using two wires, the controller is connected to the blood machine via an Arduino Board. The board has two tasks; to send signals to the blood collection system and to keep track of how much blood is being drawn.
Details of the individual's age, weight, height and medical condition will be keyed into the board prior to use so that the board can calculate how much blood can be safely drawn. It will stop the machine from withdrawing any further when the required amount has been collected, and a medical professional will also be standing by the whole time to ensure everything goes smoothly, and maybe even cheer you on as your defeat foes in the video game.
Taran and Jamie explained that they are not really reinventing anything – all they are doing is hacking a pre-existing blood collection machine to take the gaming experience to a whole new level. “Our goal is to develop a refined, multi-player unit that can be taken across the country for blood donation gaming events,” they wrote.
“We are not a charity and we are not a game manufacturer. We are simply creating the gaming hardware that will allow us to get gamers thinking about more important issues while still doing what they love,” they put humbly.
Blood Sport is designed to work with all gaming consoles and all types of video games. The creators' initial intention was to raise the target amount of money and then partner with the appropriate organizations in both the gaming and medical field. Unfortunately, Kickstarter has temporarily suspended the campaign probably due to the slightly “gory” aspect of it, and the creators are currently working on resolving the issue. But with that said, I think that it is actually a really cool idea to integrate both blood donation and gaming together. I might even donate blood for the first time ever despite my phobia of needles just to try out this gaming experience.
Check out the video below to see Blood Sport in action!