Showing posts tagged gaming

Are you addicted to games?

Net Addiction NZ provides free online resources for identifying, understanding and managing problematic or addictive video gaming and internet use. Created by James Driver, a passionate gamer and psychotherapist, it contains a wealth of information based on the very latest research into problem gaming, a topic that is increasingly becoming an issue of emotional, psychological and social significance for men in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Here comes the Games Masters

Discover the Gods of Gaming
Featuring over 120 playable games, Te Papa’s latest blockbuster exhibition celebrates the work of the world’s most influential videogame designers. Including Peter Molyneux, Warren Spector, Tim Schafer, Hideo Kojima, and more.

This exciting exhibition showcases some of the most groundbreaking games ever made across arcades, consoles, PC and mobile platforms.

Presented in three sections, a spectacular live gaming universe has been custom built to allow visitors the opportunity to experience and explore rare original game artwork, revealing interviews with game designers and large-scale interactive displays.

Arcade Heroes focuses on the seminal arcade games of the late 1970s and early 1980s; Game Changers explores the work of the most influential game designers from the past 30 years; and Indies will reveal how independently produced games are leading the way in game play and aesthetics.

Game Masters offers the rare opportunity to play Yu Suzuki’s full-body 1980s arcade games, including Out Run; take a dance challenge in Alex Rigopulous and Eran Egozy’s Dance Central 2; test yourself in a four-player version of Firemint’s Real Racing 2; and be immersed in a 3D display of Tetsuya Mizuguchi’s Child of Eden.

Also coming soon is the amazing Game Masters publication, which includes designer profiles, essays and over 100 images from your favourite games. Purchase from Te Papa Store.

Only at Te Papa from 15 December 2012 until 28 April 2013.

SPARX self-help computer programme

SPARX is a self-help computer programme for young people with symptoms of depression. The programme has been funded by the Ministry of Health and developed by a University of Auckland team which specialises in treating adolescent depression. Check out the award winning game at

This may not be for everyone. I am sure there will be a lot of guys with their sons bonding over Star Trek, Magic or the Zombie walk.

(I will be there!!!) 

It’s only a game - or is it?

Who remembers Pong? Astro Wars? Pacman? And who would have thought that these humble little bleepers would morph into today’s Wii Fit or even Avatar Kinect?

From their very first incarnations, computer games have enthralled us, engaged us and frustrated us. Over the last 30 years gaming has become a huge force in global technological development, with games crossing time zones, cultures and geographical borders, creating their own sub-cultures and rules of engagement along the way. The future of gaming is bright but the question remains: is gaming good for us?

Plenty of gamers would say yes. There have been many advances in technology which have gotten people off the couch, created new social interaction opportunities and basically wowed us with its ability to provide realistic experiences. From the very first documented computer game “Noughts and Crosses” created for a doctorate dissertation in 1952 through to today’s Brain Computer Interface gaming devise that claims to have mastered thought control, it’s fair to say the world of gaming has grown at an intense speed.

The PlayStation2 Eye Toy in 2003 was one of the first games to enable players to interact with their games using motion, colour detection and sound. Nintendo went on to release the best-selling video game of all time, Wii Sports, in 2006 and Wii Fit in 2007. Using motion sensing capability these games were designed to get families socialising and exercising together with activities ranging from baseball and tennis to yoga and strength training. Today there are even more options in the market including PlayStation Move, and Microsoft’s Xbox Kinect, which doesn’t even require a controller at all.

The speed at which mobile gaming is becoming popular is also worth a mention. With smartphone technology, mobile phones today are hugely feature focussed and that trend is accelerating. They started with the 1997 Nokia handset – when games like ‘Snake’, involving black pixels moving on green pixels, were popular. Speed forward 14 years and Android has recently released the Sony Eriocson Xperia Play, the world’s first PlayStation certified smartphone. Mainstream gaming has expanded as we have the ability to do it wherever we wish, whenever we wish.

There are, however, those who take an ‘approach with caution’ stance on gaming. ABC news has reported on the addictive nature of gaming and the affect it has on people’s lives. The well-known game, World of Warcraft, is renowned for this issue.  In fact, a study by Mary Schlimme goes so far to ask do we need a Video Gamers Anonymous? There have been a number of studies on gaming and its link to social exclusion and depression. Studies such as the Pathologal video game use amongst youths add important information to the discussion. The New York Times ran a blog article early this year looking into teenage mental health related to the amount of time spent playing video games because it doesn’t look promising. 

Most of us have gamed at some point or another. How does it work for you? Is it social connection time, a chance to unwind or the opportunity to get your 30 minutes a day that makes you reach for the controller? Does the advancement of gaming technology excite you or concern you when you hear of the ‘latest gaming release’? Feel free to comment below or on the HisBiz Facebook page.

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HisBiz is about connecting the business and wellbeing worlds to support prosperous, healthy futures for Kiwi men. It's time to stand up and do something. It's time to put men's wellbeing back in the spotlight.

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