History of Games

The first game that was invented was a diced game and the purpose of it was to pass the people through a grave famine. It was invented in the Kingdom of Lydia by a king named Herodotus. The king decided that one day the people would eat and the second day the people would play games and so forth. The famine lasted for 18 years and they were able to survive; however, for one winter the famine increased and there wasn’t enough food for everyone.

The king decided for the people to play a dice game which would decide who will go out into the world and explore in order to find a new place to live while just enough people remained behind so that the food would last them (McGonigal). The following historical anecdote might sound like a normal, exciting story, although it carries out a deep message.

Introduction

First, it sounds like a Video games story plot and secondly it shows us how games are beneficial to us and how they can be of use to humanity.

Multiple people today accuse video games as a source of wasting time or a source of corruption for many generations. Despite the stigma surrounding video games, they have been proven to have a positive contribution to our children’s skills development and community.

History of Video Games

Video games have been around for almost 60 years, since 1958. Throughout the 60-years video games have evolved in various way and come in many forms. Today, video games come on virtual reality, or on consoles such as PS4 and Xbox, or on computers, or even on phones.

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The more video games evolve the more people are attracted to them. According to the Entertainment Software Association(ESA) – a U.S. association dedicated to serving the business and public affairs needs of companies that publish computer and video games for video game consoles, handheld devices, personal computers and the Internet- “About 67% of Americans or 211 million people” play video games and this number will continue to rise according to many experts. As the number of public attractions increase, so does the evolving of the industry. “Americans spent a record of $36 billion on video games last year, and demographics show that number is expected to go up …” (Bhardwaj, Prachi). Since they have been able to attract so many people, they were able to attract various group age. This started to make people question what is the importance of video games in our lives and why is it attracting so many people with various group ages at such a fast rate? Although Adolescents and younger pupils are getting attracted today at an increasing rate than older people, this may have had different effects on their skill development and concepts of gender equality.

Video Games Today

We see today that there is almost an equal number of both female and male gamers. According to George Osborn founder of Go Editorial, a content marketing company that supports companies in the video games industry, 46% of Gamers are women while 54% of gamers are men. On top of that, Video games have been proven to be one of the most Non-gendered media which means that it portrays men and women equally and not only does it portray them equally, but also provides both of them with an equal chance at achieving the same goal with equal difficulty without discrimination. Michael Kimmel a distinguished professor at Stony Brook University and the State University of New York. Also, a leading researcher and writer on gender, men and masculinity, and also the author or editor of numerous books and articles including The Gendered Society Reader Sexualities: Identities, Behaviors, Society, and Manhood in America proves the fact that the concept of sexism and gender inequality exists in our society, and how women are underrepresented. Therefore, Video games are not only promoting equality among all but also teaching it as well to the younger generations even if it isn’t pointed out directly.

Video games are usually inspired by a real-life event that occurred in our history or our imagination of what the future will be like. For instance, Assassin Creed Black Flag is a game that reflects a series of events that occurred during the Renaissance to the War of Independence to the Age of Piracy. The Assassin or the gamer tries to develop a strategy to conquer all the territories on the map. Another game is Call of Duty: WWII which reflects the history of World War II from a soldier’s points of view. Other strategy games are sports games such as FIFA or NFL. One game that shows what the future is Spider-Man 2022, which reflect a world with advanced technology such as flying cars and a lot of robots. The point is that video games provide many opportunities for learning and building creative and innovative ideas.

Video games are “natural teachers” according to Dr. Douglas A. Gentile – an expert in his field, a talented writer, and co-authored a book titled Violent Video Game Effects on Children and Adolescents. By natural teachers, he is referring to the mechanism in which video games introduce new skills to the gamer which they use multiple time throughout the game plot. Practicing that skill over and over provides the gamer to advance the part of the brain responsible for coordination and memory, also known as the Hippocampus. Advancing such part of the brain help those players to prevent achieving diseases such as Dementia and Alzheimer’s as they grow older. Other improvements that Dr. Gentile mentions are “… visual attention to the periphery of a computer screen.… collaboration skills”. Collaborating is a crucial skill that applies everywhere in school and at the workspace. Speaking of collaborating skills Jane McGonigal, a video games programmer, and researcher at the Institution of the Future, talks about the development of games that thrives people to solve worldwide problems. One of the examples that she mentions is SuperStruct, which is game where the world is about to go extinct in 23 years and everyone is on the team and they are responsible to save it. There were about 8,000 participants that played for 8 weeks and introduced 500 new extortionary ideas that are creative and innovative. On top of that video games reinforces the presuming of good habit due to rewarding the players for their good actions like plus one health or plus one strength. This concept doesn’t exist in the outside world, so games help to train players to presume these good habits even after playing. The concept of having many chances to perform a certain task is something that also doesn’t exist in the world which provides the player to learn from his or her mistakes as he or she is repeating the task, in which they failed to complete. Leading to the understanding of mistakes in which they have performed and why the strategy they performed won’t work. This serves as a good mechanism of training in the health care professional careers.

Today, Video games come in many forms. One of the most recently developed forms is virtual reality. Virtually reality is exactly what it sounds like, a fake world where a person enters by using Virtual reality glasses to do whatever he or she wishes and escape reality. Since it’s a made-up world created by us, we were able to develop a program for the health care professional careers like a surgeon and pharmacists. Using this program allows a surgeon to practice surgery before actually performing which reduces the risks of death when performing the surgery. This is due to the fact that they use these Virtual reality programs to stimulate the outcomes if they perform a certain action during the surgery. As for pharmacists and nurses, it provides an opportunity for them to live-in real-life situations and practices on how to deal with patients depending on the workplace in which they are placed in. Providing practice for younger generation studying to be in such health care professional careers, so they have the optimum amount of knowledge when they are ready to be assigned to their field of practice. Although video games have proven to be beneficial in multiple ways, many still do believe that there consequences far out way their positive effects.

Effects of Video Games

Video games produce effects such as addiction which may seem incomparable with the benefits that we gain from video games; however, the following negative effects would not be produced in a controlled environment. Parents are the caregivers, the captains of the ship which guides their child’s development, so it’s important that they guide that ship in the right direction. It’s important that we understand that parents need to give enough time for the child to play to develop advantageous skills and not adverse symptoms such as addiction, obesity, and even Social separation. Doctor Jesus Pujol and his colleagues, at the hospital Del Mar, conducted a research in 2016 that investigates the correlation between playing video games weekly and certain cognitive abilities development and related problems in development. They concluded that playing video games for one hour per week was associated with positive motor skills and higher school achievement scores. But no further benefits were observed in the children playing more than two hours each week. Hannah Nichols, a journalist who writes about medical and health content for patient, health care professional, obstetrician, gynecologist and midwifery audiences in the specialist area of stem cell processing and research, states that “72 percent of gamers aged 18 or older”, this is good because most of the developing stages that occur in humans are from eight to fourteen years of age, also known as puberty. Nonetheless, the remaining 28 percent includes kids within the developing ages which would lead to the point that parents must observe when buying games what kind of the content does the game include and how it can affect the child playing them. However, this may not seem as big issue because according to the ESA-entertainment software association- “94 percent of parents say they pay attention to the video games played by their child”. On top of that, they Claim that 70% of gamers parents believe that “video games are a positive part of their child’s life.” Not only are they important for the child’s growth, but also for economic growth.

Video games industries have made “36 billion-dollar revenue” last year, and the number according to experts should increase within the upcoming years. Also, they provide over 220, 000 jobs for people throughout the United States according to the ESA. On top of that, there are about 500 million gamers in the world and within the next decade the number is expected to increase by 1 billion, so this would result in 1.5 billion gamers states, McGonigal. As the number of gamers increases the demand for games will increase, which would lead to more demand for the production of games. This is a basic economic shift in the demand and supply curves. The meaning of the following concept is that more players are going to need more games, so more games are going to need to be created by the manufactures. The manufacturers are going to need more supplies and in order to create more supplies, we need more workers and more video games programmers. Making more jobs available to the population. Although later on in the future this concept might not be implied since buying games online is becoming more popular but at a slow rate because of such factors as hacking.

Conclusion

Video games provided a positive contribution to our economy, to our education, and our children’s developing skills and ability. It’s time to observe and recognize these positive contributions and leave the empty half of the cup behind and focus on the full half of the cup. Video games may have a negative effect if used abusively and inconsiderable, but if used correctly we can benefit more and survive through our own famine just like the kingdom of Lydia. This is why it’s important to urge the parents to lead and teach their kids to have a sense of responsibility when using video games, and maybe through playing more we can solve worldwide problems like global warming or world starvation in places like the African contents or even find a way to live on Mars, and so on. It’s time that we Advance the younger generations, so they can accomplish goals that our ancestors and even us weren’t able to achieve. Let us put our hopes in younger generations and video games. who knows maybe one day the younger generations can even attend school in virtual reality, which would give our children more fun, safer, and real experience.

Work Cited

  1. Bhardwaj, Prachi. “Americans Spent a Record $36 Billion on Video Games Last Year, and Demographics Show That Number Is Expected to Go up in 2018.” Business Insider, Business Insider, 12 June 2018, www.businessinsider.com/americans-spent-record-36-billion-video-games-2017-charts-2018-6.
  2. Campbell, Colin. “Truth and Fantasy in Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag.” Polygon, Polygon, 22 July 2013, www.polygon.com/2013/7/22/4543968/truth-and-fantasy-in-assassins-creed-4-black-flag.
  3. Gentile, Douglas A. “Video Games Affect the Brain-for Better and Worse.” Dana Foundation – Home, 23 July 2009, www.dana.org/Cerebrum/2009/Video_Games_Affect_the_Brain%E2%80%94for_Better_and_Worse/.
  4. “Industry Facts.” The Entertainment Software Association, www.theesa.com/about-esa/industry-facts/.
  5. McGonigal, Jane. “Gaming Can Make a Better World.” TED: Ideas Worth Spreading, 2014, www.ted.com/talks/jane_mcgonigal_gaming_can_make_a_better_world/up-next?language=en.
  6. Nichols, Hannah. “How Video Games Affect the Brain.” Medical News Today, Med Lexicon International, 10 July 2017, www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/318345.php.
  7. Nielsen , Mark, and Morgan J. Tear . “Video Games and Prosocial Behavior: A Study of the Effects of Non-Violent, Violent and Ultra-Violent Gameplay.” Computers in Human Behavior, Pergamon, 26 Sept. 2014, www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0747563214004415#.
  8. Pujol, Jesus, et al. “Video Gaming in School Children: How Much Is Enough?” Annals of Neurology, vol. 80, no. 3, Sept. 2016, pp. 424–433. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1002/ana.24745.
  9. Sacirbey, Susan. “VIDEO GAMES and THEIR EFFECT on MODERN DAY SOCIETY.” The Huffington Post, TheHuffingtonPost.com, 7 Dec. 2017, www.huffingtonpost.com/montclair-diplomats/video-games-and-their-eff_b_9873646.html.
  10. Smuz , Lisa. “Ask the Expert: How Do Video Games Affect Mental Health?” Each Mind Matters, www.eachmindmatters.org/ask-the-expert/ask-the-expert-how-do-video-games-affect-mental-health/.
  11. “Virtual Reality in Healthcare.” Virtual Reality Society, 22 June 2018, www.vrs.org.uk/virtual-reality-healthcare/.

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History of Games. (2022, Jan 24). Retrieved from https://paperap.com/history-of-games/

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