The rise of advanced technology and the Internet has significantly changed the way conventional games were once played. With the same compelling mix of skill, strategy and luck, online gaming has become perhaps one of the most engaging forms of entertainment worldwide. Online gaming is now more accessible than ever, with seemingly endless options for devices and operating systems. From numerous console brands, desktop computers and smart phones, one can access and play games at any time of the day almost anywhere in the world. While critics of online gaming might reference the lack of in-person social interaction or conversation, the development of key skills simply cannot be ignored. Here are five ways online gaming builds valuable skills for life.
1. Enhances Your Judgement
Online gaming can benefit both your quick logic and your slow logic judgement skills. Quick logic happens in the blink of an eye while slow logic involves careful deliberation and calculated choice. These methods of judgement are routinely practiced during online gaming – whether it’s a quick-reaction to your opponent’s move or a thought-out strategy to win the game. It’s human nature to want to make the “right” decision and knowing when to make judgement calls can be difficult. Online gaming can help players practice making timely decisions and avoid analysis paralysis, or taking too long to make a choice.
2. Builds Resilience
In the real-world, it’s simply not possible to control every situation and every outcome. Online gaming is the perfect virtual opportunity to practice dealing with unexpected outcomes. For many people, it’s an overwhelming struggle if those outcomes are negative. After a few rounds of defeat, it can be extremely difficult to stay motivated. Online gaming helps to build resilience. If you loose one game, you can reset the game and try again. You start to learn that you usually have attempt something several times before you’re successful. Resilience is a very important skill and learning it at any stage of life equips you to deal with the trials you will face ahead.
3. Helps Improve Productivity
Improving your productivity isn’t something most people think of when they think of playing a game of Minecraft. Chumba Casino reports, “In a recent survey, our participants definitely believe that online gaming fosters productivity. In fact, 54 percent of participants have played online games at work, 15 percent have played at school and 14 percent have played at both work and school.” It takes focus, alertness and concentration to excel in any game you play. In a world full of distractions, these skills are extremely important keys to being productive. Once learned, transition them to offline situations – from being under pressure at work to even having a deep conversation with someone. Your outcomes will likely be more productive.
4. Encourages Teamwork
Multi-player games are a great opportunity for people to practice being a part of a team and encourage each other. What’s more, online gaming platforms provide an outlet for those who might be introverts — to practice communicating and interacting in a more comfortable setting. Teamwork skills are valuable to virtually all professions. It’s something most are taught at a young age (especially if you went to grade school) but can be difficult for those who haven’t had much practice. Having access to these interpersonal interactions via online gaming can really go a long way in life. From the Vita’s standpoint, the team-based multiplayer modes of Killzone Mercenary reflects this perfectly. While the single player campaign offers superb gameplay, the online mode raises this to another level.
5. Promotes Inclusivity
Many believe online gaming socially isolates you, but it actually promotes inclusivity. Virtually anyone can play any game (besides age restrictions for certain games) and it’s fun to play together. Where as in other forms of gaming, such as sports, athletic ability is the key to participating. Of course some gamers are better than others and they might be hard to beat, but everyone still has the opportunity to log on and try. This mindset can be transferred over into real-world scenarios – from leadership opportunities to social settings. Inclusivity is very important in our culture today and ultimately it’s how humanity will take charge of our future to change it for the better.
At the end of the day, online gaming is meant to be fun and entertaining — but it’s up to you to also use the valuable skills you’re learning and transfer them to your offline life.
Husband, father and lifelong geek. Originally from the West Midlands, now spending my days in South Wales with my family and a house full of animals. Passionate about video games, especially retro gaming, the Commodore 64 and PlayStation Vita. Love pro wrestling, sci-fi and I’m an animal lover and vegetarian.
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