November 30, 2008 // 4:12 am
- Just under a week ago we featured a Compulsive Gamers Not Addicts
article, and today a related topic of dicussion is Video Games Versus Real Life.
Since the dawn of time, there have been conflicts. Men Vs Women, Right Vs Wrong, the list goes on. But have we really gotten to the bottom of any of these? Well now, it's time to solve a conflict so steeped in history that some of you just might not be old enough to remember when it began.
We all know the stereotypes that come into play here. There's the typical 'nerd', complete with sweaty palms and dorky glasses. The other being the 'jock'. The sports loving, woman seducing bully. Obviously, recent times have changed this situation.
More and more 'regular' people are playing games, and the nerd stereotype is becoming less of a crux of gaming. But whenever you picture the Real Life Vs Video Games argument, that's what you think of, right?
Cast your mind back to school. Remember when it came time to choose sides for a good old game of football? In every school, there was that guy. The absolute best player. You spent your early life losing every time to some guy named Connor with a perfectly toned body and an affinity for all sports. Didn't it ease the pain to go home, turn on your console and win with your amazing X + O + L1 combo? That got me through some tough times.
A similar thing could be said for dancing, and playing the guitar. And games like Guitar Hero even save you money! If you're going to have a mid-life crisis where you rush out to fulfill your rock star dreams, wouldn't you rather spend £70 on a game that actually lets you feel like the best thing to ever pick up an axe than spend preposterous amounts of money on an original Gibson that you'll get tired of after a month?
The competitive element of video games helps bring people together in a way that not many other things do. Play online and team up with people from across the globe to achieve a common goal, it's the stuff of fantasy sci-fi futures, where everyone co-operates digitally.
Fighting and combat games help relieve stress. I'm sure everyone can sleep more soundly at night knowing that people are shooting at each other in a completely virtual world, getting the urge out of their system without having to cause anybody any harm.
If you wanted to take part in an F1 race, or land a huge trick on a skateboard in real life, you'd best be prepared to spend a lot of time and money to get there. Video games put all this in the palm of your hand, pat you on the head and tell you to have fun.
There are some big advantages to real life, such as meaningful relationships, love and the rest of that crap, but videogames have a better pros to cons list. They take the tedium out of life and bring new things to lots of people, which I think gives them the win over real life. How about you?