Genre Web game to fight violence against women
Roles Lead QA – Summer 2009
Lead Designer – Fall/Winter 2009
Designer – Winter/Spring 2010
Team Size 50 approx.

How do you change a cultures mind about how to treat women? The answer is through pervasive altering of their media and role models.

Breakaway is a United Nations funded game project to end violence against women. The game accomplishes this goal by targeting young boys. These young boys are exposed in the game to positive and negative role models. The player’s reactions to these role models in narrative situations related to respect and equality towards female characters creates short term and long term repercussions with both obvious and subtle feedback designed to encourage players to make the right decisions. The right decisions in life equal the right decisions in Breakaway.

Breakaway is mostly based upon the Sabido Method. The Sabido Method has been used for decades to create social change through media in developing countries. Based mostly on aspect of social psychology, the Sabido method uses role modeling to encourage consumers to view making positive decisions as the cool thing to do. Combined with Operant Conditioning inherent in the design of most video games, Breakaway uses Role Modeling and all four contexts of operant conditioning; Reinforcement, Escape, Punishment, and Penalty. All these psychological tools come together to enact change with the purpose of reducing violence against women.

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