Gaming is a great workout for the mind – disguised as fun. In a recent study conducted at the University of Portsmouth in the UK, gamers were subjected to a battery of tests designed to measure how they thought. The tests were performed on a computer screen while the participants played different types of games; two versions of Tetris were chosen. The results showed that when the participants engaged in virtual gaming, the amount of grey matter in their brain significantly increased.
The research is in its early stages, yet what is known so far is that games stimulate the brain. Grey matter changes as a result of engaging in different types of activity. Gaming can be described as the combination of activities that are common in many genres of computer games, such as racing, puzzles, shooting, action, and adventure. Games can be fun, yet there is a clear purpose behind them: to entertain.
There is much less research on the impact of gaming on children, but given the current trend of mobile gaming, it’s not a wild guess that gaming may have a positive effect on children who play mobile games. Games are most often found on smart phones or handheld devices, which make them accessible to millions of households. Research has found that mobile strategies games are especially popular with teens. The latest research suggests that gaming is a critical factor in teenagers choosing the types of television programs they will watch.
Adults tend to be more receptive to adventure games, puzzle games, or sports games – though casual players are beginning to give these genres a second look. Mystery and adventure games are extremely popular, and yet it is surprising that a large number of players choose card games. Of all video game genres, card games require the player to think on their feet and utilize critical thinking skills. It is this critical thinking skill that players will use to solve mysteries and achieve goals within the game.
Of all subgenres of games, perhaps none is as ubiquitous as the turn-based strategy genre. Turn-based strategy games are famous for their complex gameplay and complex rules and often involve competing against an array of characters, all with different strengths, weaknesses, skills, and motivations. While the game play can be highly competitive, the overwhelming majority of players will never face an obstacle they cannot overcome through proper planning and initiative.
Video game mechanics can vary widely depending on the type of game. Action games usually follow a path of progressively more difficult levels, as well as new gameplay mechanics for each successive level. Strategy games generally take the form of one or more conflicts between different types of entities, with the objective being to defeat or defend the opposing faction. Finally, simulation games allow the player to take on a specific role, such as a bounty hunter or nurse, in an environment set up as realistically as possible. No matter what genre of video games you enjoy most, there are many different types available that can provide hours of entertainment and teach important life lessons.