A common notion in the video game community is that it is mostly unproductive and destructive for students. Several students share their stories of how the game has impacted their priorities, skill development, friendships and overall lifestyle.
Video gaming is a case-by-case subject, but some similarities can be found. CSUSB third-year history major Nathan Arguello said he spends an average of four to six hours playing video games a day. He said his daily amount “generally revolves around his schedule for the day” based on his shift, activities with his church and desire to spend time with friends.
For most gamers, playing video games is an outlet for the harsh realities of the world. It’s a place where they can make choices without fear of consequences, waste time and relax with friends, and it’s even a place to connect them with people from all over the world. Although his daily amounts of video games seem high, Arguello is a studious scholar who maintains passing grades in all his classes and always seems to do his job.
Many people who don’t understand a gamer’s lifestyle assume their priorities are mixed, they’re not physically fit, and their social skills are underdeveloped. This is not the case for Ayed Irshed, a third-year major in kinesiology. Irshed said that during his teenage years he averaged four to six hours of gaming, but now with a full schedule of college classes, going to the gym five to six days a week, and running a business, he could only afford that. one to two hours. .
“Video games were destructive in my priorities as a young teenager, but a lot of that was because of the lack of responsibility,” says Irshed. “Now, as an adult, I have the control of myself to limit my gambling indulgence to where it’s enjoyable, but not to the point where I place it higher than other aspects of my life. ”
With the luxury of playing video games comes moderation, just like everything else in life. It’s very easy to lose track of time, so one method Irshed mentioned he uses is that he makes sure all his homework is done and any other productivity he had planned for his day before he leaves. being able to relax with video games. This serves as his reward system and undermines the design of players with a poor work ethic.
Joshua Pearson, Third Year Information System and Technology Major with a Concentration in
cybersecurity, shared how playing video games helped him in a beneficial way. “I grew up playing
lots of games incorporating puzzle solving that requires skillful thinking which actually helped
improve my critical thinking skills beyond what the education system has helped me so far,” says Pearson.
Studies have also proven that playing video games increases hand-eye coordination and speeds up
reaction times due to the fact that some games rely heavily on these qualities to run well.
Another positive attribute that can be produced by play is the social aspect of talking to
people from all walks of life. There are many personal stories of strangers playing online video games together who stay in touch for several years before finally meeting in person and sometimes people make lifelong friends. Especially with the recent COVID-19 lockdown events, video games have remained a primary source of communication between friends who couldn’t meet in person.
CSUSB alumnus Mason Portales described playing during this time as “therapeutic and enjoyable”.
“During that time, it was hard to feel connected to anyone,” Portales said. “Play games with
my closest friends and even my church pastor sometimes helped me a lot. Many conversations happen on the headset during these hours of play, it can range from advice on different life difficulties, cracking jokes and laughter, making future plans and even in-depth discussions about religion, intimate relationships and aspirations for the future.”