Preliminary Research

First, I would like to say that this game will be developed mainly from some of my most personal experiences and it will be primarily focused around the issue of loneliness people have. People don’t have to be alone to be lonely. Loneliness occur when people have standards or expectations for their social life which are then not met, these expectations might be subconscious, you might not be aware of them.

I won’t be spoiling much of the game here, but I would be integrating facts, notes and any other miscellaneous info about the issue throughout the game. I am using multiple journal articles to develop my game’s script in order to not be misleading or too far from the point.

The scenes ill be making are of a dialogue nature which will allow the user to pick his option and branch into multiple things with a possibility of more than two endings.

Psychiatrist Frieda Fromm-Reichmann (1959) raised awareness on loneliness and noted the need for a rigorous, scientific definition of loneliness. In the decades that followed, loneliness as a psychological condition was characterised, and measures for quantifying individual differences were introduced. Loneliness corresponds to a discrepancy between an individual’s preferred and actual social relations (Peplau & Perlman, 1982). This discrepancy then leads to the negative experience of feeling alone and/or the distress and dysphoria of feeling socially isolated even when among family or friends. This definition underscores the fact that feeling alone or lonely does not necessarily mean being alone nor does being alone necessarily mean feeling alone. One can feel lonely in the crowd or in a marriage. Reciprocally, one may enjoy being alone at times in order to reach personal growth experiences to simply take a temporary break from dealing with the demands of modern life. [1]

                Loneliness is not simple, it has a multitude of dimensions and they are these three:  intimate loneliness, relational loneliness and collective loneliness. Every type of the previously mentioned loneliness occurs within areas known as the: intimate space, Social space and public space. The spaces are shown in the figure below. [1]

Image result for different dimensions of space

Figure 1.The three dimensions of loneliness and different compartments of space. [1]

                Intimate loneliness:

 Intimate loneliness or as coined by Weiss in 1973 the emotional loneliness which is the absence of a significant other that provides emotional support, affirms the value of that person and assistance to the person, which is mutually given back. This dimension of loneliness corresponds to the term “the inner core” which is normally the five people that resides in a person’s close people known as the “support Clique”.  In contrast to popular belief, the case of intimate loneliness isn’t just the absence of a spouse, but might be the detachment within the bounds of the relationship.

Relational Loneliness:

 Also known, as the social loneliness, it refers to the perceived presence/absence of quality friendships or family connections—that is, connections from the “sympathy group” within one’s relational space. This group usually contains an average of seventeen people for which you meet with regularly.  In conclusion, the quantity of friends one has is not the issue, the issue resides in the quality of the friends you chose, this is the crucial point in diagnosing one with loneliness.[1]

Collective loneliness:

The final dimension is beyond people, it lies within the person’s valued social identities and how he confirms to them and use them to interact with people in his out-most circle. This sort of loneliness can happen within the self as a person if he is someone that doesn’t like himself or the way he is. I am saying he but of course it could be anyone. The collective loneliness is perhaps the most important, as a person with that type of loneliness can not form friends and relationships easily.[1]

Loneliness of any kind puts the person at great risk of physical and psychological dysfunctions and prompt to multiple health risks and studies shown it is a major contributor to the start of depressive symptoms.

I will be using the information I gathered to fill in the blanks of the story-line’s facts as my personal experiences won’t be enough to show a complete and clear message in my scripts. The use of personal experiences will help me to paint the emotion on the player using my words which will come in handy when I need the person to feel a selective set of emotions. Another idea that will make use of the sources I gathered but haven’t reflected on yet due to me not figuring out how to integrate them yet, is that the person who will help the player push through hell and rise back up to healthiness by giving actual advice which are suggestions given by medical journals.

A final thing i will say about loneliness that i will be using in the scripts of my game, is some of the experiences i had, when i talk to strangers i usually see it as a chance to screw things up.

References

[1] S. e. a. Cacioppo, “Loneliness: Clinical Import and Interventions,” Perspectives On Psychological Science, vol. 10, no. 2, pp. 238-249, 2015.

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