The University of Washington Bothell’s Digital Future Lab has donated 10,000 copies of its first commercial video game to a nonprofit that supports members of the military and their families.
The 56-level all-age puzzle game, “Ghostlight Manor,” went on sale in December for $14.99 through Steam, the digital distribution company associated with Valve Studios in Bellevue. Taking a student project to this level is a proud accomplishment for the lab’s executive director, Jason Pace.
In a professional game development environment, Pace led teams that created and improved the quality of the game over several years of classes that welcome a neurodiversity of students. Pace also is proud to support Stack-Up, the nonprofit based in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Stack-Up says studies show video games can help veterans deal with stress, pain, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder.
“They made a really good game,” says Kevin Wallace, the organization’s chief operations officer. “Stack-Up is proud to be receiving the generous assistance of a program we feel reflects some of the same core values – using video games to assist and better the lives of people of all ages in a fun and friendly environment with a focus on building a strong and more enriched future generation of gamers.”
With a retail value of nearly $150,000, the Digital Future Lab gift is the largest individual donation to Stack-Up since it was founded in 2015, says Wallace. Stack-Up shares key codes with individuals in the military who download the game. Among the places “Ghostlight Manor” is going for the holidays are Iraq, Afghanistan, Kuwait, Australia and the United Kingdom.