The habit of playing video games is adopted by Three out of every four, or 244 million, people in the U.S. play video games, according to data from the NPD group in 2020. Electronic games can bring countless benefits to the physical and mental health of players, and nowadays, they even help younger children to learn.
In the following list, check out eight curiosities that you probably didn’t know about playing video games.
1. Many games are created especially for younger children
With each passing day, younger children have earlier and earlier contact with electronic devices such as smartphones and tablets. It is therefore not uncommon these days to see children already in early childhood playing games on their parent’s cell phones.
Thinking of serving this audience, game developers such as Orange Studios Games and Spin Master Studios have increasingly invested in the development of educational games. With them, they seek to stimulate children to develop new skills and learn new things while playing.
2. Playing videogames stimulates teamwork
Although in the older consoles multiplayer gameplay was quite limited, with the technological advances, and especially the Internet, today it is easily possible to participate in matches with more than two players. This, in addition to giving the universe of games a new model of gameplay, has brought a great advantage to users: the learning of teamwork.
Games such as League of Legends (LoL), Counter-Strike, and even Among Us would not function properly if teams did not get together to work in sync. In this way, the titles end up encouraging teamwork, guiding their players to unite for a positive result.
3. Video games do not incite or influence violence
It is common to find criticism on the Internet or in everyday life that current games are problematic for youth. One of the main targets is shooting games, which are often heavily criticized for the popular belief that they incite violence. Research by academics, however, shows otherwise.
A 2013 study by the American Psychological Association showed that video games, even those that are based on violence, have several learning and health benefits for children. Furthermore, the University of Oxford, in research published by The Royal Academy in 2019, has shown that there is no direct link between aggressive behavior in young people and playing violent games.
4. Shooting games can improve your eyesight
According to research conducted in 2012 by the Visual Development Lab at McMaster University in Ontario, it is possible to improve vision with the help of video games – in particular, with first-person shooter (FPS) games titles. However, it is worth saying that, for these results to be found, it took a lot of discipline from the research participants, who played at predetermined times and for controlled periods.
The study pointed out that this type of game provides the user with the perfect environment and characteristics for the improvement of human vision – that is, a wide field of view for monitoring, as well as speed, attention, and constant adrenaline pumping. In these titles, the player cannot just stare at the screen but must act to survive. This activity ends up altering neurochemical processes and gives more plasticity to the human brain.
5. Games stimulate their players to multitask
Several games require a lot of attention, especially in situations with simultaneous tasks. Titles such as Café Mania, ChefVille, and The Sims are excellent examples of this, as the player must deal with a series of events, as well as figure out how to conduct and solve them. With practice, observing and solving these numerous simultaneous tasks can help in everyday situations, such as in traffic, at school, and work, for example.
6. Not every video game forces the player to sit for hours in front of the screen
Since the launch of consoles like the Nintendo Wii and the Xbox 360, it is no longer possible to say that you have to sit for hours in front of the television to play games. This is because nowadays most consoles are compatible with games that capture and recognize the player’s movement, as is the case with the Just Dance franchise, for example.
This is why several other successful titles, such as the Zumba Fitness franchise, as well as Wii Fit and Wii Sports, are used as a tool for exercise and weight loss.
7. Games help people to deal with problems related to stress, anxiety, and depression
After suggestions and testimonials from consumers, some game developers, such as PopCap, began funding research on their games. As a result, they discovered that puzzle and reasoning games such as Bejeweled, for example, help improve the mood and heart rate of their players.
The hypothesis is that, amid modern life, people cannot disconnect, and idle moments end up generating anxiety, stress, and even panic. Therefore, these games that stimulate logical thinking in a light and relaxed way end up putting the player in a non-bored state of relaxation, which is extremely beneficial.
8. Virtual reality games help reduce pain
Tests conducted at several university hospitals in the United States showed that patients suffering from chronic pain experienced great relief when playing virtual reality (VR) titles. The study worked like this: first, the patients rated the pain they felt on numerical scales from 0 to 10. Then, they underwent gaming sessions and activities in VR goggles.
The results were positive, showing a reduction of 1.5 to 3 points on the pain scale. These numbers were especially significant, especially when compared to those generated by non-immersive treatments, which did not reduce even a single point.
The ultimate goal of these trials was to reduce the use of painkillers and other pain-relieving drugs in patients. Today, they can choose from more than 20 different immersive experiences on the platform used.