Since it was first introduced way back during the 1970s, the online gaming industry has continuously gained momentum and built a community of loyal and diverse gamers. It is currently known as one of the most engaging forms of entertainment for people of all ages.
The online gaming industry comprises of different game genres. As such, gaming enthusiasts with different gaming preferences can seamlessly play games that penetrate their interests. From the extremely popular MMORPGs and MOBAs to racing and sports simulations to a variety of card games, the gaming industry has something for all its audiences.
The diverse selection of games available is what makes it truly appealing to the global community. More importantly, each game genre has been found to harness a specific area of development in the brain. There are games that help harness a player’s senses and cognitive skills. There are also those that enable gamers to experience what it’s like to be a strategist or tactician, manager, stylist, and even an adventurer on an action-packed voyage.
Online games are more inclusive and positively influential than what most disapproving critics deem it to be.
As such, when parents used to tell that playing video games degrades their child’s overall well-being, they were unfortunately mistaken on so many levels.
Due to its ever-evolving nature, more and more individuals across the globe are joining the online gaming fever. Thanks to the constant advancements of modern-day technology and the power of the internet, being a part of the conventional online gaming landscape has become extremely easy.
The continuous development of the gaming industry led developers to create more games that support brain and social development as well as the enhancement of one’s lifestyle. In fact, experts have discovered that the right amount of exposure to online games provides numerous psychological benefits, and these include the following:
1. IMPROVES MOOD AND ALLEVIATES STRESS
Some researchers have corroborated that playing online games provides a considerable psychological effect on its players.
A recent survey revealed that out of 1000 gamers, around 42% of them felt happiness and even cited that online games have helped calm them down. Another 27% believed that playing video games has helped them deal with several issues related to their mental health. 28% stated that online games as a hobby gave a huge positive impact in terms of their reflexes and coordination.
The positive reception of gamers generated the conclusion that playing video games is, in fact, an untapped source of stress reliever.
2. ENHANCES MENTAL WELL-BEING
As mentioned, video games have different genres that allow players to choose the right game that suits their preferences.
Examples of these are video games with puzzles incorporated within it such as Portal, Tomb Raider franchise, and Limbo.
Not only are these games fun to play, but these games are also designed to enhance one’s memory, focus, attentiveness, and analytical skills; adding another layer of improvement to the enrichment of the players’ cognitive skills.
3. HELPS DEVELOP SOCIAL SKILLS
Online games such as Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games (MMORPG) and Multiplayer Online Battle Arean (MOBA) are said to play a significant role in promoting a player’s communication skills and fostering a mindset of teamwork within every player involved.
Since these games are team-based, it allows players to communicate, plan, and strategize with each other, thus enhancing the sociability of players. The said setup has also been found to work well with some introverted individuals and people experiencing social anxiety. Video games allow them to step out of their comfort zones and mingle with other players minus the pressure and discomfort that they would usually experience in face-to-face interaction. In other words, online games provide more freedom for self-expression and the opportunity to build confidence and self-esteem.
4. PROVIDES A THERAPEUTIC FORM OF ENTERTAINMENT
Though some games are intended to be played competitively, the main purpose of most online games and game consoles is to provide good entertainment for everyone, regardless of the kind of lifestyle and interests that they have.
Since online games can be accessed through the internet, it allows players to play their favorite games whenever or wherever they like. Online games aim to fill in the gaps in one’s regular routines, spice up idle moments and ultimately ease the different stresses experienced by people daily.
The increasing dependence of both industries and consumers on the internet has also unlocked multiple financial advantages for game developers and patrons of online gaming.
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VIDEO GAMES ARE THE UNTAPPED SOURCE OF PSYCHOLOGICAL IMPROVEMENT
The definition that online or video games are a gateway to escape the harsh realities of life is merely scratching the surface of the positive effects that it can bring. In truth, it can also be used to help players soothe their minds, relieve stress, stay engaged, build rapport with fellow players, and most importantly, gain the right kind and amount of entertainment where they can achieve a sound mind and body.