Before I begin my manifesto, let it be known that I myself am not a “gamer”. Also, while I’ve played video games myself I do not necessarily like seeing friends or family spend hours on end gaming. I’ve watched my brother become addicted to video games and be adversely effected in most ways possible. That being said, I understand why some choose to live more time in a virtual world and here is my manifesto for them:
Mentioning that you’re a “gamer” almost can instantly bring negative thoughts to many that choose not to coexist in the real and virtual gaming world.
First thoughts are always stereotypical- Overweight, socially awkward, junk food eating middle aged boy still living with his parents.
But… “Before you judge a man, walk a mile in his shoes”.
Gamers are often bored with the real life environment. Everyday challenges bore them because anyone can accomplish them, and many already have. How many have single-handedly accomplished a life/world saving mission?
Everyone likes purpose.
Gamers are just like everyone else, they’ve just found purpose in a virtual world, one greater than that given to them in real life.
Maybe the problem isn’t gamers;
The problem is the low expectations we’ve set for every kid born on earth.
We need to take a hold of our youth, examine their strengths and motivate them to exploit their God given talents.
Our potential is untapped as a society, which is proven by gamer culture.
Gamers seek duty, lets put our trust in them.
@MyDtcAccount – Jonathan Crabtree
“It builds problem-solving skills!”
“It increases hand-eye coordination!”
“We can be and do whatever we want in videogames!”
I cannot tell you how many times I have heard these “reasons” when people who love to play videogames try to convince others that playing videogames are beneficial to them and, ultimately, society. In the TED Talk that we watched in class on Thursday, the speaker said that we actually need to start playing MORE videogames in order to help our planet survive. Now, I realize that she was talking about specific games that cause people to solve real-world problems, but I have my reservations about those kind of games ever hitting the mass market. My “manifesto” is that the gamer culture should stop fooling themselves, and start to view videogames as nothing more than they are. A pleasant waste of time. That’s not to say that videogames are terrible and should be avoided at all costs. It’s impossible to think that anyone can be productive 100% of the time and not take breaks for pleasurable activities. But when people start to view their videogame time as productive, that’s where problems start to arise.
As far as the “reasons” given above, they are all easily shot down. The “problem solving” reasoning is given all the time, but how much of a crossover is there between that and real life? My guess is that it hardly ever comes into play at work, home, or school.
The “hand-eye coordination” claim is legitimate, but more problems than benefits come from the physical aspect. Sure, your hand-eye coordination is improving, right along with the shortening of your hip-flexors, causing an anterior pelvic tilt, which leads to low-back pain and compromised posture.
Finally, the excuse that you can “be/do whatever you want” is a reason that really irks me. What’s the point of having the virtual reality? Why would you want to do that instead of improving your own life? It comes at the expense of affecting your real life, and I believe that that is much more important than your make-believe avatar.