Video games often get transgressions. It makes kids sit in front of a T.V or a computer for hours ignoring the outer world. Children do not get fresh air. But some games are made to get people moving. This genre, called active video games can actually benefit a player’s physical and mental health. Northeastern University professor Amy Lu is interested in harnessing the power of video games. Games combined with narrative storytelling improve health. She recently collaborated with postdoctoral researcher Jungyun ‘JY’ Hwang to study this topic.
The researchers recruited 110 students of Northeastern University for the first-ever study of how active video games affect the health of young adults. Lu and Hwang wanted to find out whether adding a narrative element to an active video game would lead to increased physical activity and improved cognitive function in the players. Playing video games helps in the development of perceptual abilities and motor skills. Kids acquire problem-solving skills, learn teamwork and alertness increases in them. Interactive video games compel children to practice more and more in order to have good concentration, planning and developing other skills. Video games may help one to learn and succeed in a competitive world efficiently.
Playing narrative video games like Assassins’ Creed, uncharted and Witcher 3 may lead to increased physical activity and improved cognitive function. Lu’s prior research shows that in children aged 8 to 11, stories embedded in active video games encourage kids to play longer and more vigorously. Hwang and Lu found that the student participants who listen to the narrative portion are able to play more compared to the students who skip the narrative.
In conclusion, we cannot ignore the other side i.e., the negative effects which are necessary to be mentioned. Kids and those adults who play video games become more obsessed. Although games show graphic content about hatred, shooting, and killing may lead changes in the behavior of a person. This appreciates anger. Usage of abusive language, beating others, domination, etc are also found in some games. Academic performance also gets affected by playing more and more. Parents should keep an eye on what their children are playing.