Playing video games is a common past time for many high school and college students due to the gameplay mechanics, the storylines, and the fascinating graphics. In fact, video gaming has grown to become a multi-billion dollar industry with dozens of companies involved in hardware and software production (Ciută, 2016). In light of its popularity, it must be asked if playing video games causes more negative than positive effects on a person. As such, this paper will examine the opinions of students on the impact of gaming.
Negative Impact of Video Games
Many educators believe that playing video games is a waste of time since the hours spent on a game could have been better utilized in studying. Other contributing viewpoints to this train of thought bring up the growing problem of video game addiction. Video game addiction has repeatedly been pointed out as a one of the main adverse effects of playing video games (Davies & Blake, 2016).
This often results in people preferring to play a game than to engage in actual social interaction and is cited as one of the reasons behind the lackluster results of some children in school. Massively multiplayer online role-playing games such as World of Warcraft have been blamed for many cases where teens and young adults forego societal contact so that they can play games. In fact, it has gotten to a point where video game addiction has resulted in children eschewing their academics so that they can play more games (Davies & Blake, 2016).
Positive Impact of Video Games
Various supporters of the video game industry point out that addicts represent only a small percentage of actual gamers. Many of them live productive lives and even mention that video games had helped them immensely when it came to hand-eye coordination, establishing friendships and having a means of entertaining themselves cheaply.
One of the positive effects of video games is the social aspect that has been connected to it. Games like World of Warcraft, Call of Duty and other online role-playing games allow players to communicate and collaborate with one another. This has led towards the development of numerous online communities where like-minded individuals debate with each other and even form friendships (Ortiz de Gortari, Pontes & Griffiths, 2015).
Aside from creating a whole new social dynamic, video games have also contributed in altering society as we know it through the creation of an entirely new platform of entertainment. Before the popularization of video games, easy to access entertainment came in the form of television and books. With the advent of video games, people were able to find something equally as entertaining resulting in more options for entertainment.
Is the positive impact of video games worth the negative outcomes that they cause?
Research population and sample
The study population that will be utilized in this paper will consist of various high school and college students within the local area. The age range will be 13 to 20 years old since this was determined by the researcher as the prime age that most people start playing video games extensively.
Data collection methods
The data collection methods will consist of a short survey that will be conducted by the researcher using the following questions:
- What is your opinion on the impact of video games on a person’s life?
- Do you think that video games are a waste of time or do they have positive benefits?
- Have you experienced any harmful effects from playing video games and, if so, did you stop playing video games because of them? Please elaborate and explain.
The results from the first question revealed that 80 percent of the research subjects did not consider video games as having a negative impact on a person’s life. They stated that the impact is often based on how a person prioritizes activities.
The results from the second question are mixed since the respondents indicated that they did not gain any skills from playing video games and, as such, considered it a waste of time; however, they stated it was worth it due to the entertainment value.
The respondents indicated that they were able to handle their video game addictions as they grew up since they learned how to set priorities. Many of them continue to play video games to this day and state that it is not harmful at all.
All in all, the study showed that video games are not harmful so long as a person understands how to establish priorities when it comes to what activities they should be doing. Further studies that investigate this topic should attempt to determine if online role-playing games can be used as a means of helping shy students become more outgoing.
Davies, B., & Blake, E. (2016). Evaluating Existing Strategies to Limit Video Game Playing Time. IEEE Computer Graphics & Applications, 36(2), 47-57.
Ciută, F. (2016). Call of Duty: Playing Video Games with IR. Millennium (03058298), 44(2), 197- 215.
Ortiz de Gortari, A. B., Pontes, H. M., & Griffiths, M. D. (2015). The Game Transfer Phenomena Scale: An Instrument for Investigating the Nonvolitional Effects of Video Game Playing. Cyberpsychology, Behavior & Social Networking, 18(10), 588-594.