Video games have always been an escape for many. Especially with the coronavirus pandemic that has left most people stuck indoors and isolated, video games are more mainstream than at anytime in human history. For instance, if you’re playing Pokemon competitively, you’re using your brain for strategy – to think a step ahead of the opponent. And if you’re playing Halo or COD, your hand-eye coordination is put to the test.
Gamers have often faced a stigma for being lazy and unmotivated, but that appears to be changing – at least in terms of what video games might do for mental health.
The startling findings were based on over 3,000 participants in a recent study. The study, headed by Oxford University, focused on the games Animal Crossing: New Horizons and Plants vs Zombies: Battle for Neighborville, but obviously correlate to games of just about any genre – from strategy to FPS games, or more story-driven ones like Cyberpunk 2077.
“Contrary to many fears that excessive game time will lead to addiction and poor mental health, we found a small positive relation between game play and well-being.”, said the study in a notable statement. Rounding out the study, Oxford concluded that “We are optimistic that collaborations of this sort will deliver the evidence required to advance our understanding of human play and provide policymakers the insights into how they might shape, for good or ill, our health.”