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Thread: Computer gaming. Wasted time right? Not really.

  1. #1 Computer gaming. Wasted time right? Not really. 
    Forum Ph.D. Raziell's Avatar
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    Having played computer games for 20 years of my life, I often hear that it is wasted time.

    First of all. Time spent fun is never wasted. You only live once and every second you are happy is the best of time investment considering we are all going to die anyway in my opinion.

    That was just my opening argument, which I feel is in itself good enough to justify it. But here is the real deal:

    Language skills. I had a D in English until gaming really took off as a hobby, I went from a D in oral+written exams to a B written (I still suck at grammar in all languages, so a B for me was a very strong grade) and straight A's in my oral exams. Note: Im not a native English speaker.

    Team work. Playing MMO's taught me to cooperate and work better with other people.

    Cultural. Playing MMO's taught me alot about other people's culture and countries, having played with russians, koreans, arabs and so on. Through voice chat and ingame conversations I learned alot about other cultures and countries and got a real life perspective and information about them.

    Personal development. Many games, RPGs in particular, has very deep storylines and teaches you diplomacy skills that can be applied to real life. They also have alot of morally ambigious quests, conversation and storylines that helps further critical thinking and so much more. Overcomming shyness is also something I can thank gaming for - as the need for voicechat and communication was vital to succeed.

    So before you teach your children that gaming is bad. Consider the tonns of real life applications and personal development it contributes. Media does a horrible unscientific job of portraing gaming in the most negative way possible. I can say for a fact from personal experience built up over 20+ years, that it has left me with more knowledge, skill and personal development than it gets credit for. And Im positive that if real research was done about gaming and how it affects a person, the pros would far outweight the cons. That is ofcourse if the person does other things than just play as the dosage makes the poison.


    A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if nobody believes it. - David Stevens
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    Forum Professor arKane's Avatar
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    Educational gaming is not new, however it's still being developed and a great deal of work still needs to be done. The following site is a good place to start checking it out.

    Educational Gaming Commons | Teaching and Learning with Technology


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  4. #3  
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    I remember that old game used to have alot of puzzle, especially the Adventure genre. I remember playing Space Quest 5 where you can roleplaying as a spaceship captain & giving order & visit unknown places, and there is also this one adventure game where we play as a kid and go thru time and recreate Benjamin Franklin's lightning kite experiment(!), and also a more recent Nancy Drew game where you must remember number and pattern of color to solve certain things.

    This kind of game no longer appealing since graphic are not in par with Halo4 and there's no action, but at that time when you really play it: its really amazing that you can experience alot of things and figure out how cool your mind were in solving all those puzzles.
    -----

    This reminded me of this documentary about an older form of Adventure game: GET LAMP: The Text Adventure Documentary - YouTube

    Its really different than todays, nowadays computer games is more about competetive/cooperative multiplayer.
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  5. #4  
    Forum Ph.D. Raziell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by msafwan View Post
    I remember that old game used to have alot of puzzle, especially the Adventure genre. I remember playing Space Quest 5 where you can roleplaying as a spaceship captain & giving order & visit unknown places, and there is also this one adventure game where we play as a kid and go thru time and recreate Benjamin Franklin's lightning kite experiment(!), and also a more recent Nancy Drew game where you must remember number and pattern of color to solve certain things.

    This kind of game no longer appealing since graphic are not in par with Halo4 and there's no action, but at that time when you really play it: its really amazing that you can experience alot of things and figure out how cool your mind were in solving all those puzzles.
    -----

    This reminded me of this documentary about an older form of Adventure game: GET LAMP: The Text Adventure Documentary - YouTube

    Its really different than todays, nowadays computer games is more about competetive/cooperative multiplayer.
    Many modern games have problem solving aswell I forgot to mention that one but a good point.
    A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if nobody believes it. - David Stevens
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  6. #5  
    Forum Freshman HB3l1's Avatar
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    I have been told this so many times, that I actually created a barrier in my brain, whenever I hear the next words used in the same sentence together 'computer games/bad/you. My brain instantly creates a barrier that prevents this for having any kind of influence on me.

    At some point I admit games could be waste of time, and indeed I admit it, I could spent my time better. Especially playing MMO games, it's kind of repetitive, and at one point boring, but 'we' still cannot resist it, we're playing until the very end.

    I like your first sentence, and I used it quite often. ''Time spent fun is never wasted'' , but once again, I used to drink a lot, it was fun. So I should keep drinking? =P

    I had many benefits from the games.
    1. Improved my English.
    2. Games triggered some peculiar ideas in my mind.
    3. Games boosted my imagination.

    And I am still playing some games, but not one from which I can benefit, unless we count fun in benefits. I am playing mostly online competitive games. They are simply luring me, I like to compete and prove myself in any kind of way. But what to do. . We aren't machines.
    Last edited by HB3l1; November 17th, 2012 at 07:55 PM.
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  7. #6  
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    While sitting in a staff meet I once listened to a bitter Armor Colonel lament computers and how much time it was taking away from team building sports.

    Two meetings later our communications officers took a minute of his staff briefing time to show a game vid with VOIP of a well organized team coordinating an attack on a sniper (COD I think it was). He also showed the Leroy Jinkins vid as a joke that even good plans fail, just like real life. The Colonel got a good laugh and the message-- the tens of millions of young Americans can learn teamwork from their living rooms. Now years later I'd argue that they are actually learning it better than their past generation because many more of them can be competitive and actually be with an online team. I see nothing but great hope in our youth.
    Meteorologist/Naturalist & Retired Soldier
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  8. #7  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
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    Kids can lean more easily with games. A 4 year old can easily (without feeling he has to/pushed) count to 100 with a (non computer) Penguins game (where they catch fish, then you count the fish to know who won, you play and count the fish as he watches, then he wants to also count the fish and is attentive. If you have him sit without context and teach counting odds are its not going to be interesting and it will not register as well). Of course though its fun, if the kids only plays this game over and over he will not really learn all that much more. Its similar with Video Games, if its a leisure thats a reasonable part of your overall activities and you play a variety of games with new innovative games, then its certainly not a waste of time, but if you play a disproportionate amount of your time, and play the same game (limited variety) then its not as evident its not a waste of time, relatively speaking, because of course this applies to most types of leisure, which makes single-ling out video games dubious. Imo, Leisure is not a waste of time any more than sleeping(which is essential biological and to keep your mind sharp), and its level of pedagogic benefits varies.
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  9. #8  
    Forum Senior pineapples's Avatar
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    I’m sure I improved my reading skill as a kid playing text adventure games on my BBC Micro back in the 80’s. But for me I still think gaming is a waste of time overall. Especially MMO games like World of Warcraft. There nothing but pseudo-progress. They really do zap your motivation to focus on something more constructive with free time.
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  10. #9  
    Forum Freshman HB3l1's Avatar
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    I suggest to the people who claim that video games are completely waste of time, to watch the following documentary .

    Daphne Bavelier: Your brain on video games | Video on TED.com
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