Showing posts tagged gaming
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.
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!!!)
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.