By Tim M.
Prior to my enrollment in our class, I had never played an MMORPG. I did, however, play a lot of console games. Dating way, way back (at least for me it’s a long time ago), all the way to the times of GameGear and SNES, I’ve always loved playing sports, racing, fighting/shooting games, and even a select few RPG’s (I’m pretty sure Sonic, Zelda, and Mario installments are considered rpg but feel free to give me a verbal lashing if I’m wrong). And although a lot of the games I played had very enjoyable single player modes, playing with or against my friends (and a large part with my brother) is the main source of my love for video games.
I never really bothered to think why this was true. I mean, video games are fun, hanging out with your friends is fun, so I just took it at face value that playing video games with your friends would be doubly fun. Once I read this blog topic (and played some FIFA) and started thinking about where video games fit into my life, I surprised even myself by realizing that the same qualities that are fostered through playing competitive team sports can be learned through playing video games competitively. I learned to lose gracefully and become better by not making the same mistakes over and over. I learned to compete, and not always by myself, but often with a teammate or teammates (2v2 FIFA or Madden) in the same way a sports team must compete together.
Though this is just a brief list of the things I learned from video games, I’ve realized that all the times my dad told me that video games were just fun and not useful he was wrong. I was developing a very similar skill set playing video games with my friends that I did playing sports with my friends, which he supported to no end. I think I’m going to have him download the podcasts of our class, maybe he can learn a thing or two.