Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

The Emerging Potential of Video Games

Credit: hobbymb/ http://tinyurl.com/hd3u2pp

Credit: hobbymb/ http://tinyurl.com/hd3u2pp

By Aaron Kandola

A growing body of research is finding that video games stimulate the brain, but are the skills acquired transferable and is violence in games really an issue?

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Every year, video games grow in sophistication, accessibility and popularity. It’s almost impossible to recognise the influence of early arcade and console video games that became popular in the 1970s and 1980s in the immersive complexity of modern video games like Call of Duty or Diablo.

It’s not surprising that 68% of Australians play video games for an average of almost 1.5 hours per day, according to a Digital Australia report published this year (http://tinyurl.com/j3rhj6z). Modern video games have encapsulated our imaginations through the Hollywood-style cinematics, dynamic virtual environments and intricate storylines of games like Metal Gear Solid to the daringly simple yet strategically demanding gameplay adopted by app-based games like Angry Birds.

Concerns have been raised about the intense relationship we have developed with video games. It’s difficult not to wonder what else could be achieved if those 10–11 hours per week were spent playing sport or mastering a new language.

The average young person spends around 10,000 hours on video gaming by the age of 21 – enough time to earn two bachelors degrees. However, research is beginning to challenge the perception that gaming provides us with little more than a means of entertainment. Playing certain types of video...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.