Walking around outside and getting some sun or going on an adventure with friends or family are activities that keep us happy and healthy. For the 40 million people living with an anxiety disorder, going outside, running errands, being in social situations, or exercising feels like a steep unscalable mountainside. In this new age of augmented reality apps, many people who have anxiety disorders are now taking to the beautiful outdoors with these apps and living their lives!

Therapists and clinical psychologists like Ben Michaelis, Ph.D. credit Pokemon Go! as an AR app that has helped his patients “interact with the world by hooking into their natural sense of playfulness.” Michaelis believes that interacting with the outside world and the people or community around them that use the app helps people with anxiety and depression disorders because they are given “concrete goals to interact with the world in new and interesting ways.”

If you have anxiety, depression, agoraphobia, or are overwhelmed by life and need a reason or motivation to go outside, take a peek at these active AR games and keep reading to find out about more awesome AR apps. Some of them were released around the same time as Pokemon Go! and others are so new that they haven’t been released yet!

Jurassic World Alive

Cue the award-winning music! Jurassic World Alive is a low stress, Pokemon Go! inspired AR game that can be used at home, on your work break, or anywhere that you have cell service. Go for a walk around the block or bring it along on a hike to collect over 100 prehistoric dinos on adventurous days, or use an AR drone to collect dino DNA on less adventurous days. Feeling social or you just want to level up that triceratops? Meet new friends who are fans of the Jurassic Park franchise or challenge other players to a battle!

Release Date: Spring 2018

Compatible with: iOS, Android

Website: https://www.jurassicworldalive.com/

 

Ghostbusters World

I ain’t afraid of no ghosts! Especially Slimer! Are you a fan of the paranormal comedy franchise? If so, you’ll get a kick out of using the Ghostbusters World AR app aka your Proton Pack! The app works with GPS and will have you scouting out and capturing ghouls and other baddies in grocery stores, parks, and anywhere you can think to take it. Engadget says that fans can expect “the ghosts will come from all the different Ghostbusters media, including films, TV shows, theme parks, and video games.” Fans online have shared that they want the app to have a teamwork element that would require people to get together to capture ghosts.

Release Date: 2018

Compatible with: iOS, Android

Website: http://www.ghostbustersworld.com/

Video Credit to: Ghostbusters News via YouTube

Harry Potter Wizards Unite

There’s magic in the world around us and with the upcoming Harry Potter Wizards Unite AR app! Carry the app with you wherever you go as you become a wizard or witch. Learn to cast spells, search for and find artifacts hiding in your neighborhood and come face to face with other witches and wizards. Open yourself up to new possibilities, get heart-healthy exercise, and give your brain a boost by strolling around and being whisked away by magic.    

Release Date: Late 2018, September 1st (speculated)

Compatible with: Smartphones (not specified)

Website: https://www.harrypotterwizardsunite.com

Credit to: Niantic Labs

 

Biba

Are you a stressed-out parent? Do you and the kids need to get outside? Getting play time in with the kids will strengthen your bond as a family while exercising is proven to help reduce symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression. Parents, grandparents, and caretakers with kids that are between 3 and 9 years old will love that they can use the Biba app in their own home, backyard, or when they scan a participating parks gym equipment. Biba has kid-appropriate and parent-approved games like Biba Go Seek and Biba Relay that use AR technology but won’t have you staring at the screen the whole time.

Compatible with: iOS, Android

Website: http://bibaventures.com/

 

WallaMe

Are you looking for a different way to be more connected with others? WallaMe is an AR app that people use to post hidden messages in the real world. Use stylized writing and AR stickers to leave inspiring or hopeful thoughts or words behind on anything you can think of. Did you go to the park? Leave an augmented reality note on a park bench for someone to see later. Let a person know you think about them by leaving a WallaMe message on their purse, backpack, or laptop!

Compatible with: iOS, Android

Website: http://walla.me/

World Brush

Artists, creatives, and anyone that loves to draw will love that they can doodle and compose works of 3D art anywhere in the world. Much like the WallaMe app, World Brush drawings are left in the same place they were created, except these drawings can take up tons of space if you want them to! Paintings are anonymous and can be liked, disliked, and reported, to keep up the app’s integrity and their users free from negativity. If you visit a museum or art gallery and are inspired by what you see, take out World Brush and create a drawing of your own!

Compatible with: iOS

Website: https://worldbrush.net/


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