As per market research by Zion, the video game industry is worth approximately $201 billion as of 2021. It has grown significantly since the coronavirus pandemic when people were forced to stay indoors and turn to games for entertainment. The industry is expected to grow to be worth $435 billion by 2028.
Even though it is a multi-billion dollar industry and continues to grow at an exceptional rate, many misconceptions and myths surround the use of video games.
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The gaming world has changed tremendously since the time video games were first introduced. Gaming technology has changed and with it so should the stereotypical image of a gamer. However, this is not the case. There are several damaging myths about gaming that make it a matter of debate.
Here are some common video game myths busted.
‘Video Games Cause Individuals to Become Violent!’
This is perhaps one of the most prevalent and damaging myths about video gaming. To set the record straight, violent video games do not make individuals violent in real life. It is no different than watching a crime or action-packed thriller movie, simply a matter of entertainment. There is no solid scientific evidentiary support correlating video games with real-life violence.
Studies conducted by the Massey University of New Zealand upon reanalysis of data collected from a sample size of 22,000 individuals concluded that there is no link between video games and aggression or violence. This study further states that there is no evidence to support the argument that video games can result in the accumulation of aggressive and violent feelings in the long term.
City University London publishes a similar study rebutting the claims of any correlation between violence and video games. The science seems to think, it is just a game after all!
‘Video Games Can Cause One to Be Socially Isolated’
The idea that video games cause individuals to be isolated is a silly one. This is because, for many, gaming provides an opportunity to be part of a solid community online. Video games are not always played alone; many provide an immersive multi-player experience that one can enjoy with friends. They provide a sense of comfort for people not skilled at social interaction and allow them to interact with individuals that share their interests online from the comfort of their homes.
‘It Is a Waste of Time’
People who do not understand the joy of gaming often call it a waste of time. It is important to take time out for yourself and indulge in a hobby that you enjoy. For many, gaming is that hobby and there is nothing wrong with that. Of course, if done excessively, gaming will waste valuable time however the hobby itself is not a waste of time. It just needs to be indulged in moderation.
Video gaming requires excellent skills like quick reflexes, good eye-hand coordination, quick decision-making and strategizing ability, and more. Some gifted individuals that have mastered these skills go on to become professional gamers. This entails entering competitions and tournaments and playing for money or sponsorships against other opponents.
‘Videos Games Are Just For Kids’
There are different types of video games. Some may be for kids but there are many designed to suit mature audiences. Video games are not just for kids or men. We routinely see female video game players and streamers on platforms like YouTube and Twitch. Therefore, it is fair to say that people across ages and genders love video games.
Stereotypical Gamer Representation
The stereotypical image of a gamer is of a poor-groomed individual with little to no care for health and hygiene. This is what gamers are portrayed as in movies, shows, and cartoons repeatedly. This is a bit insulting. There are many types of gamers. It would be unfair to reinforce the idea that video games make people sit all day and lose regard for their mental and physical health.
Video gaming and its impact on the youth is a controversial topic routinely discussed in heated debates. Video gaming has its pros and cons but often is grossly misrepresented to be a social evil that needs to be eradicated. This simply is not true. With this article, we aimed to bust common video gaming myths that supported this idea to help you understand video gaming a bit better.