The stereotype that video games have negative connotation either because of the gameplay or the people who play them is still very common. However gaming is like watching T.V. but rather watching, you are a part of the program. Of course the majority of people who hold these opinions are from an older generation who have little to no experience in gaming. However the idea that video games are more destructive than beneficial is not scientifically proven, on the contrary it is the other way around that is proven to be true.
In an article named The Positive and Negative Effects of Video Games it gives a number of positive and negatives that go with gaming. However it mentions that the majority of the negative connotations of gaming are usually socially accepted rather than scientifically. The positive effects are numerous but the biggest examples are:
- Following instructions: forcing kids to learn to follow to instructions in order to proceed through the level teaching them a very important life skill.
- Problem Solving: there are countless of puzzle games that makes the players think of different tactics in order to overcome their obstacles.
- Ex: Portal
- This game forces the player to think of different methods, using the source of portals, to navigate through a test chamber.
- Ex: Portal
- Resource Management: There are many games that are based on economics and the success of a business, so the positive use of ones limited resources is a skill that is taught at a very young age do to these games.
- Ex: Roller Coaster Tycoon
- This game has the player try to create the most successful roller coaster park that they possibly can forcing the player deal with the economic struggles of owning a business.
- Multi-Tasking: A skill that everyone wants to master in order not to waste time and video games trains this skill since multiple events must happening simultaneously in order to be the most efficient.
- Ex: StarCraft
- This game has players build up a base in order to create enough forces in order to take out their opponent (who is another human player). The multi-tasking skills of saving up resources, building up a military force that counters the opponents strategy, but at the same time dealing with other A.I. and enemy forces makes the player use their multi-tasking skills to the fullest.
- Ex: StarCraft
- Perseverance: A skill that video games helps a lot due to the fact that it is rare to find a level or circumstance that one can master on the first try, so the constant perseverance to overcome the level is a positive life skill learned.
- Introduction to Technology: Since computers are a major part of the twenty-first century the introduction to the use of computers and other systems help the gamers become more adapt to all technological sources giving them a huge advantage over others.
These are just a few examples on why video games are positive to the development to a person. Especially children, where they are beginning their development process. On the contrary there are very few negative aspects of gaming but they are usually do to social ideals.
First a foremost the most relevant counter argument can be that they are a waste of time. And yes this can be true, one could be more effective with their time either working or studying but the casual sit down and play is no waste. In an article from the American Psychological Association it states that 70% of gamers play with friends or online with countless of strangers creating a form of social interaction. So “the stereotypical loner gamer is a very rare site in gaming”. Also, gaming has become a very popular form of entertainment that a professional route through organizations like ESL , MLG, and UMG gives players an opportunity for professional careers in gaming. Not to mention the art of developing a game is a much respected career and takes many years to become good at.
Another counter argument for video games is the amount of violence that is introduced to children at such a young age with games like Mortal Combat and Call of Duty. Kids are taught through the video games the violent actions that the games present. However, the rating system specifically states what age is most appropriate for one to play the specific game and then from that point it is the parent’s responsibility to not buy the game for the child. Since a person under the age of eighteen cannot purchase a rated M or above game the parent or legal guardian will have to accept the terms in order to buy the game for the child.
In the end gaming doesn’t have a negative connotation, its society that gives it a negative vibe. It has been proven to help better surgeons and military soldiers in countless of occasions. The training for faster reactions and processing skills cannot be overlooked because of a small fraction of violent people and events that were considered “influenced by gaming”. If anything gaming is helping this generation hone their skills and be more prepared for the “real world”.