Using Vitruvius as a Framework for Applied Game Design

  • Micah Hrehovcsik
  • Lies van Roessel


The number of games designed for various applications in healthcare is growing rapidly. However, balancing the needs of an applied game can be a difficult task, especially without a guiding vision or design framework. Here, we propose a philosophical framework inspired by the ancient Roman architect Vitruvius, which can be used as an approach to designing and developing applied games for healthcare and other contexts. Vitruvius believed any well designed artefact should exhibit the three principles of firmitas (soundness or sustainability), utilitas (utility or purpose) and venustas (attractiveness). We describe the Vitruvian approach to applied game design using the design process of Moodbot - a game for mental healthcare - as an example. In this paper, we reflect on the Moodbot project and the application of the Vitruvian triad herein.

Applied Games, Serious Games, Games for Health, Philosophical framework, Vitruvius, Mental Healthcare 


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Copyright information

© Springer Fachmedien Wiesbaden 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Micah Hrehovcsik
    • 1
  • Lies van Roessel
    • 1
  1. 1.University of the Arts UtrechtHilversumthe Netherlands

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