Video games are not always fun and entertaining. Sometimes it’s serious business.
Two high school students from Dallas ISD Conrad High School have developed a video game that requires players to navigate from a wheelchair.
“People in wheelchairs, their life is totally different,” said Sergio Reyna.
Reyna’s teammate Collin Porter knows this firsthand.
Porter was born with a joint disease called Arthrogryposis and relies on a wheelchair to get around.
“It was very … revealing,” Reyna said of the development of the game. “How we take everything into account (sic) in our daily lives.”
The student duo interned at Magnin & Associates, a Dallas-based video game developer, to create the unique game. Players access different levels by navigating through parks, grocery stores, and buses using a wheelchair.
“They have to be worried about their wheels,” Reyna said. “If they can actually go that fast in the grass, or if they have to take the sidewalk.”
The game caught the attention of Texas Governor Greg Abbott, who uses a wheelchair. Abbott recognized Porter for his personal contributions to the Wheelchair Mobility Experience game.
“It makes us very proud,” Reyna said. “More aware of how video games can actually help in the real world.”
Porter plans to study at the University of Texas at Dallas as part of the Game Design program. Reyna plans to study mechanical engineering at the University of Texas at Arlington.