On the other hand, playing all sorts of tricks in (realistic) sports games may inspire players to take up the sport in real life. Some children who have played the game FIFA have reported playing actual soccer a week later, and some grew up to be professional soccer players.
Now, it is granted that video games are an addiction itself, but it has recently shown potential in combating other dangerous addictions such as drugs, tobacco, and alcohol. Psychologists from a 2015 study gathered 30 undergraduates to play Tetris for a week. It was later observed that the test group had a slight reduction in their carving as the game managed to distract them from thinking about said craving. Not only do video games provide a distraction from this, but also with trauma, pain, and stress as well. According to a 2010 study at TexasA&M by Dr. Christopher J. Ferguson, those who play violent video games long-term seem to be become less depressed and get less hostile during stressful tasks.
In fact, Ferguson suggested playing video games as a way to “work through their frustrations in real life.” Video games offer an immersive distraction, occupying one’s brain while encouraging satisfaction, reducing pain with a game’s reward system and therefore allowing the user to temporarily forget their pain and/or traumatic experience. Playing video games could also aid patients with certain mental illnesses. A group of people with dyslexia were shown to have improved reading speed and attention after playing action games for a study conducted in Italy. Meanwhile, strategy games may assist in improving brain function among older adults and possibly provide protection against Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Though video games are fictional and are widely believed to be a waste a time, there is a wide range of benefits a gamer can have in life. Some games are used for educational purposes such as the Jumpstart series, effective in teaching kids any subject in a fun, creative manner. Other games are centered around historical facts and real events that inform its players of such knowledge. Video games could also teach important moral lessons and values within its plot. Aside from that, these games allow players to experiment with different experiences, choices and consequences live out an alternate life in a virtual reality.
This is evident in playing the Sims games where it simulates characters that the player will have to manipulate as it lives out its day. This sort of experience with life in a game could give a better perspective and choices on one’s reality. Other simulation games and devices, like Oculus Rift, and management type games give a similar effect.