Social Clues is a video game and therapy tool for children with autism and developmental disabilities that focuses on teaching person-to-person communication. The game presents an interactive narrative in which the player’s choice of actions and dialogue advance the story and affect the outcome (akin to the Choose Your Own Adventure book series).
Players search for lost toys and explore vibrant, 3D, storybook levels based on real-world environments where children typically need behavioral improvements. To find the lost toys, players must communicate with people in the environment, navigate conversations, and problem-solve everyday scenarios (e.g.: waiting in line, dealing with flexibility, joining a group, etc.). Pragmatic lessons and social learning goals are purposefully chosen for each level and character type, and are re-enforced via conventional mini-games and gameplay.
Behind the scenes, the game tracks player choices and provides real-time feedback for parents and therapists regarding the player's abilities and potential progress or deficits and areas for improvement. The analytics show trend lines in development and decline, so parents can actively build customized levels perfectly tailored to their child's needs. Social Clues provides an engaging cast of characters, thought-provoking scenarios and FUN mini-games that teach, and model, appropriate behaviors for application in everyday lives.
Social Clues is being developed initially for the Apple iPad, with future potential for additional touch screen devices and platforms.