Blood Sport is a new gaming system that’s all set to revolutionize the way we donate blood. While traditional blood donation methods can be ‘draining’ to say the least, the makers of Blood Sport have designed a fun process that involves playing video games. You’ll be so immersed in the game that you’ll hardly notice the blood being taken from you every time you lose a life
Blood Sport is the brainchild of Canadian inventors Taran Chadha and Jamie Umpherson, who are well-known for gaming-related projects like Shoot the Banker, Surrogaid and Prank House. Now, with Blood Sport, they’re “taking the consequences of the gaming world and having them affect you in real life. So every time you get hit in the game, blood will be intravenously drawn from your arm.”
Their new idea, they say, is stupidly simple. “Nowadays, most video game controllers rumble when you get shot in the game,” they explained on their Kickstarter page, through which they’re trying to raise $250,000 CAD (US $222,700). “That rumbling means that an electrical signal is being sent to the controller to let you know you’ve been hit. All we’re doing is re-routing that same electrical signal and using it to turn on the blood collection system.”
So just before you start playing the game, a medical professional will insert a needle into your veins that is connected to a blood flow controller. Using just two wires, the controller is connected to the blood machine via an Arduino Board. The board has two jobs: one is to send signals to the blood collection system and the other is to keep track of how much blood is being drawn.
Using pre-entered values of age, weight, and medical conditions, the board calculates how much blood needs to be drawn. It will stop the machine when the required amount has been collected, but a medical professional will also be standing by the whole time to make sure nothing goes wrong.
Taran and Jamie explained that they aren’t really reinventing the wheel – all they’re doing is hacking a pre-existing blood collection machine to take the gaming experience to a whole new level. “Our goal is to develop a refined, multi-player unit that can be taken across the country for blood donation gaming events,” they wrote.
“We are not a charity and we are not a game manufacturer. We are simply creating the gaming hardware that will allow us to get gamers thinking about more important issues while still doing what they love.”
Blood Sport is designed to work with all gaming consoles and all types of video games. If they’re able to raise the target amount of money, the duo plan to partner with the appropriate organisations in both the gaming and medical field. The launch will happen on March 17 in Toronto, during which pledgers need to sign an injury waiver before donating blood.
You can show your support for the game and the cause by pledging as little as $5 CAD on Kickstarter. If you contribute anything over $10, you’ll actually get the chance to try the system yourself. Interested?