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Unlike in the past, where children still played real games, today children sit on the sofa or in front of various electronic devices such as laptops, computers, cell phones, and televisions to watch or play video games. Video games are not a thing of the past, and these games are evolving and attracting not only children but also adults. And you can’t blame them. Today’s technological advances have made these games more interactive and engaging.
Its latest innovations and top-notch graphics and animations will surely continue to evolve and who knows, maybe in years to come, video games won’t be as we used to know them. Video games get a bad rap from some people. They are often perceived as addictive, time-wasting, and violent behaviors in children. However, the reality could not be further from the truth.
Sure, like anything else, video games can be misused and exploited as escape mechanisms for people with underlying issues. That does not mean that games are the source of such problems. Healthy play has numerous physical and psychological benefits. The brain processes and learns from various stimuli generated by video games. That’s why pilots and surgeons practice their craft through digital simulations. They can create realistic situations that would be impossible or very expensive to reproduce in real life.
Surprising benefits of playing video games
Video games can improve manual dexterity
Controller-based games can be great for your hands. In a study of a group of surgeons, researchers found that those who played video games performed advanced procedures faster and made 37% fewer errors than those who did not. Special video games have also been used as physical therapy to help stroke victims regain control of their hands and wrists.
Video games can increase the gray matter in your brain
The game is really a mental exercise disguised as fun. Studies have shown that playing video games regularly can increase gray matter in the brain and improve brain connectivity. (Gray matter is associated with muscle control, memory, perception, and spatial navigation.)
Players may have better social skills
The stereotype of a shy person using video games as an escape route is not what the average gamer seems like. Previous research with children found that those who played more video games were more likely to have good social skills, perform better academically, and form better relationships with other students due to the social and collaborative component of some types of games.
Games can teach you to be a better problem solver
Open-world, quest-based, multi-level games are designed as complex puzzles that take several hours to solve. Occasionally the solution will vary depending on your actions in the game. Learning to think and strategize quickly in a fast-paced fantasy environment is a skill that carries over to the real world. A longitudinal study published in 2013 showed that children who played strategy games showed improvement in their problem-solving skills during the next school year, and thus tended to get better grades.
You can become more physically active as a player
Most major consoles now have the technology to get gamers off the couch. The future of VR gaming will take things to a whole new level. Mobile game developers have also started creating games that play throughout physical space, building them around real-world location data and inspiring players to move to progress in the virtual world.
Video games may have mental health benefits
Studies have shown that some video games can improve mood and improve heart rate, a sign that they can also help reduce stress. The correlation (not causation) between video games and stress has been reflected in numerous independent studies, which is why video games have been used in therapy for more than a decade.
They are a fun way to be tricked into learning.
There are video games in almost everything. Early on, developers recognized that video games could be used to improve reading and arithmetic skills. Today there are games that include world history, cooking, politics, chemistry, architecture, and other subjects that you may not have been exposed to in school.
Video games can inspire you to be more persistent
In video games, you either win or you keep trying and learning from your mistakes as you work your way to the finish line. For this reason, some researchers and educators argue that video games can teach people to be more confident and work toward their goals, treating each misstep as yet another learning opportunity.
Video games can improve your vision
Unless you’re staring at the screen for 10 hours straight (or sitting two feet away), playing video games can actually lead to better vision. In one study, 10 male college students who were not gamers were trained for 30 hours on first-person shooter games and then tested against 10 non-gamers. Students who played the game were able to see objects in crowded rooms more clearly due to improved spatial resolution. They could train their brains to see smaller details, because in every game those details turned out to be important.
Final words: What are the benefits of Playing Video Games?
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