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Debate: Video games

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Are video games good for children, adults, and the public?

Background and context

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Entertainment: Are video games a good form of entertainment?

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Pro

  • Video games are a great way to relax after school or work. They are good for people who feel tired after a long day of work or school. It is important that people take the time to relax and have fun in this way. It makes people happier as well as more productive when they do work.
  • Video games are more interactive than TV. When people watch TV, their brain goes into a low activity state. People who watch TV do not solve puzzles, think about the consequences of their actions, and have any control over the media. Video games on the other hand, can allow you to build critical thinking skills, and some even allow certain amounts of creativity.
  • Video games can be played for a flexible period of time. Since you create the time you want for the game, it can keep you entertained from a couple minutes to several hours. Unlike a TV show, the video game turns on and off when you want it to start and finish.
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Con

  • Video games keep people sitting in front of the TV and inactive. Video games keep people inside. They are generally sedentary activities, and can eat your free time up very quickly. Many video games are violent, and may lead to abnormal behavior. They are also quite repetitive, where the gamer does a similar task over and over again, trying to improve upon the last time they did it. This does not let the brain think about new and interesting things. Using video games for entertainment often leads the gamer to addiction, where they sacrifice their free time in order to play more video games.


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Confidence: Do video games improve a person's confidence?

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Pro

  • Gamers gain confidence in their mind and skill. For example, completing a hard video game or a hard level makes you feel a great sense of accomplishment. Since many people play video games, it has taken the role that sports did at one time. Those who are accomplished in playing are looked up to by their friends and social circle.


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Con

  • Failing in video games can diminish self confidence. Video games do not improve your self confidence because you frequently have to fail in the game. Since there are so many games today, many people quickly lose interest in one game, and so they may have a sense of failure. More importantly, video games are generally played in the confort of your home, and the confidence they give you does not reach beyond the doors of your house. Video gamers do not show improved confidence in school or real world situations. This can lead to the gamer having a detached feeling when away from the video game.
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Do video games create friends and virtual communities?

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Pro

There are many ways in which video games help to create communities. Some communities are even based on video games!

Younger students of various backgrounds often share a common interest in videos games. This leads to people who normally would not associate with each other grouping together. It also leads to more complicated dialogue, such as giving instructions about how to pass certain areas in a video game. Like other interests, those who are passionate about it are happy to discuss their hobby with anybody.

Some video games allow gamers to trade and share secrets through the game design. Trading Pokemon is an example of this. It helps youth learn skills such as negotiation, as well as allowing youth to be generous within the game. Who can not say that giving a friend a Pokemon of great value is not a present!

More and more video games are becoming highly integrated communities. Games such as World of Warcraft, and the Sims allow people to build friendships, and even relationships in a virtual environment.


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Con

Most people play video games alone, and do not interact with other people. Since video games are addictive, they can often destroy a community. Many people who were active in a variety of things change once they develop an interest in video games. Since most video games demand a lot of time to complete, and are most often enjoyed alone, people who become active gamers lose touch with their community.

Some games try to emulate communities, such as the Sims or Second Life. However, these games do not function like a real community. the gamers who use them are often more vulgar and inappropriate since there are no consequences to their actions. This can lead to antisocial behavior. They way people conduct themselves in video games and on the internet in general is often rude and free of inhibitions.


See also

External links

Video Games and Health: Teen Health and Video Games: http://www.cyh.com/HealthTopics/HealthTopicDetails.aspx?p=243&np=295&id=2375 Video Games are good for your Health: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/27474.php Video Games are bad for you heath: http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/419162/online_video_games_are_bad_for_your.html Computer games are bad for the brain: http://www.abc.net.au/rn/talks/8.30/helthrpt/hstories/hr161004.htm Your brain on Video Games: http://discovermagazine.com/2005/jul/brain-on-video-games

Video Games and Community: as a community building tool: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=98794201 independent video game development: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Independent_game_development bulbapedia... pokemon online community: http://bulbapedia.bulbagarden.net/wiki/Main_Page


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