Seizures caused by the brightly flashing images in video games are more common than most people realize. They can happen even in people with no history of seizures. Most individuals with this type of visual sensitivity (a condition often called photosensitive epilepsy) have their first seizure before knowing they need to be careful around the flash, flicker, on-screen patterns, and intense colors in video games.  

This site explains what you should know so that you can be alert for signs of seizures in yourself and others. 


Visit my blog Seizures from Video Games for discussion of medical research findings, commentary on game industry news, and accounts of real people with video game seizures. You can also learn more about me there. 

AUGUST 7, 2016

  Google’s Doodle Fruit Games: Seizure, anyone?   

What do a pineapple playing tennis and a grape going for a ride have in common? Two things: 1) They’re currently appearing in Google’s Olympics-themed iOS and Android Doodle Fruit Games app, and 2) viewing Google’s video promoting the app could give you a seizure.

         Google's doodle during the Olympics is promoting a handheld games app...

For the next two weeks while the game app is available, Google is promoting it with a zippy, fast-paced trailer. Visitors watching the trailer see rapidly moving images images that could provoke seizures in anyone with a condition known as photosensitive epilepsy.

...but watching Google's trailer about it could provoke seizures in people with photosensitive epilepsy.

I tested the trailer for its risk of inducing seizures and found two segments–involving the aforementioned pineapple and grape–with a flashing effect that could trigger photosensitive seizures. From what I can tell, the problem images appear only in the trailer and not in the games app itself–unless they appear only after players achieve a high score that I - more -