Brain-controlled games and applications
Date of Issue2016
School of Computer Engineering
Brain-computer interface (BCI) is a relatively new field of neuropsychology that involves direct communication with the human brain through an external device. BCI devices come in various types; one such type uses electroencephalography (EEG). An EEG-based device is usually noninvasive, which means it measures brain activity from a person’s scalp, unlike invasive BCI devices that require surgical procedures to be planted on a human brain directly. EEG-based devices are also significantly cheaper than their counterparts, which allows research to be done much more affordably. Emotiv has developed an affordable consumer EEG headset known as Epoc that can be used for a wide range of applications ranging from music composition to games. In this research, an Epoc headset will be used to develop a simple educational game that helps children improve their logical thinking skills and concentration. In particular, children with physical handicaps have much to gain from such games as it provides them an enjoyable way to learn. This can be achieved by making a game with puzzle-solving elements based on a famous puzzle game called Sokoban, and uses mind-controlled rather than physical inputs. A prototype of the game is developed and its controls are integrated with the Emotiv propriety software, which allows the game to be played with just the headset and no physical inputs. Some test trials are run on the prototype and the results show that the puzzle game can indeed be played with just the Epoc; however, many issues make the game far from easy and enjoyable to play, such as difficulty of control and false positive of inputs even after hours of training. Hence, it can be concluded that at the current level of technology, Epoc is not capable of replacing physical inputs to a satisfactory extent for BCI-input puzzle games to be feasible, although it may work for games which require as little as just two commands.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University