The perception of video games in society has come a long way since a few decades ago. It wasn’t a long time ago when people would scuff at people who played video games all day long. Many members of society would even deem gaming to be inconsequential.
However, that has changed in the past few years and now gaming influences society in a lot of different ways. Many of us that have been brought up in modern culture understand the importance of gaming for both mental and physical health. In many ways, gaming has a positive impact on society.
In this article, we’ll discuss how gaming has influenced society in the past and how far it has come today.
- How Gaming Has Evolved
- Gaming and Its Relation with the Real World
- How Gaming Changed the Way We Communicate and Interact
- Gaming and Education
- Creativity in Gaming
- Forming Relationships
How Gaming Has Evolved
For a long time, video games were highly exclusive only to those who can afford a gaming console or a personal desktop computer. People who want to play games need to purchase this highly-expensive equipment and connect with other people who were able to afford the same.
Today, the industry has evolved and is now accessible for many people all over the world. Gaming has created a culture and community where players get together to either play alongside or against each other.
Previously, gaming was nearly exclusive to men but that has changed today. The community is now split almost equally with 54 percent being men and 46 percent being women.
On average, 65 percent of American adults play video games and are part of the community.
Gamers and Their Social Circle
A journal published by the Entertainment Software Association also claims that the average age of gamers is 33. These are the people who are independent and have access to purchasing dedicated equipment for gaming.
It was also discovered that 63 percent of adult gamers play with others often as groups or squads and sometimes, against each other. This has led to a massive explosion of social interaction and has created opportunities to participate in the phenomenon of esports.
Much like traditional sports, esports has all the similar dynamics but are usually confined within the internet community. However, that also has changed as esports has now became part of mainstream society and media.
Gaming and Its Relation with the Real World
Many of today’s modern games mimic a lot of real-world issues. This allows gamers to relate to the world outside of the virtual environment. However, most of these games do not have any real-world consequences especially when it comes to the choices players make within the game.
Many players might enjoy rampaging within the gaming world but cannot do so in the real world. This has also become a point of contention; there is a debate if whether video gaming promotes violence and poor behavior or not.
However, many studies have shown that there is no real connection between in-game violence to real-world violence.
How Gaming Influences Society
There’s always been a social stigma against playing video games. Some people suggest playing video games negatively impacts or influences society in different ways.
However, many gamers often play video games as a means of leisure and entertainment instead of raging and cursing every player they interact with. Playing video games does not necessarily impact nor dictate the lives that these players live.
While many might want to connect playing video games to poor mood and behavior, the effects are short-term and the connection between the two is still being studied and debated to this day.
How Gaming Changed the Way We Communicate and Interact
The introduction of the internet has greatly improved how gaming influences the way we communicate and interact as a society.
Even if you are from the other side of the world, the internet allows us to communicate. We can do this even though we speak in a different language or come from a different culture.
The interaction brought upon by gaming is universal. There are sets of rules that everyone understands. No matter what language you speak, you still follow the same rules.
Video games and the internet have truly innovated how we function as a society. Playing games fosters a connection among players even when they are up against each other.
Players from all over the world even gather at events just to see their online friends. They have grouped together through their shared objective of fun, adventure, and camaraderie.
The trials, tribulations, and triumphs experienced by each player create a bond that they share together.
Gaming and Education
Now that we have learned how gaming can break barriers between people, there are still a lot more ways that gaming influences and affects culture and society, especially in our modern world.
One aspect of society that gaming influences is education. Education has always been in contention with gaming. Many believe that gaming gets in the way of education as young people focus more time on playing games than learning.
However, learning institutions have turned to gaming to help facilitate learning. Today, many schools have incorporated gaming as part of learning.
It is already known that games are effective in teaching lessons, morals, and culture to children and even to adults. Today, there is a massive market for educational video games.
Gaming Helps Improve Lives and Our Health
Modern technology has greatly improved our health and medical services. It has also improved the recovery of patients with the help of improved techniques that incorporate new technologies. With that, gaming has a place within the medical field and the treatment process of many patients.
The use of 3D technology has greatly helped us understand the way doctors acquire images for diagnosis. Even surgeons are often recommended to play games to help maintain their accuracy and dexterity when it comes to performing highly-complicated surgeries.
Games also inspire children to become medical health professionals. There are a lot of games that teach young minds about their own body. These games can even inspire them to become doctors and nurses someday.
Creativity in Gaming
In the past, video games were very basic in terms of the graphics, storytelling, and creativity they featured. Most of the games that we played in the early days comprise of two players with a single objective.
As video games evolve, so does the creativity of the developers. Today, many developers infuse a sense of realism in their games that can have a strong social impact. Decades ago, this would just be a dream or a plan put on paper but can never be executed.
Today, we enjoy countless video games online that help us connect with other people. MMORPGs or massively multiplayer online role-playing games are one type of video game that have a community within the game.
Games have affected society by mimicking social dilemmas while society has affected the way we play games with the infusion of realism—a mutual relationship that serves a dual purpose.
How Games Evolved in the Real World
Speaking of the time when game developers would dream of extraordinary worlds filled with creatures and colorful characters, many developers of the past didn’t have the means to put this dream into gaming systems.
It wasn’t until the early 1990s, when video games evolved at a very quick pace, that game developers were able to create worlds beyond our imagination. These worlds oftentimes have similar features such as ours and some even follow the same rules as the real world.
In these imaginative worlds, people react the way they in these kinds of situations in real life. Many players find ways of solving different issues within the game and this helps them better navigate the real world.
One of the greatest contributions of gaming to society is the formation of relationships.
Many gamers are connected over the internet which allows them to connect with people from all over the world.
Playing a game can be a great icebreaker from a very stressful day and spending it together with friends online can be a great way to relieve stress.
Through these sessions, gamers bond together to form relationships that can last years and sometimes even decades.
The Economic Contribution of Gaming to Society
Another way gaming impacts society is through its economic contribution. The taxes that are collected from gaming companies that earn from their player base can boost economic progress.
Other tax contributions can come from the corporations as well as the earnings of professionals within the gaming industry. These contributions can be funneled into projects that will help improve the lives of other people.
Many countries in Asia often have internet cafes that continue to be a major contributor to the gaming industry’s economic rise.
Technological advancements have greatly improved the way we develop and play video games. Many might still think that gaming limits the capacity of a human being to be social or that it has no positive impact on society.
However, it is known that, in the past few years, gaming has influenced and contributed far more than many other industries.