Advantages and Disadvantages of Online Gaming
May 30, 2016
Online gaming is defined as playing computer-based games on an internet platform including wireless, PC and console games. Online gaming includes extending distinct games to enable diverse groups of persons to play the game simultaneously. The games have no definite end but create an evolutionary environment that allows players to sign in and out on a continuous basis. Online gaming is most suitable on PCs which have a functional keyboard that allows players to chat with their friends as they play the games. The online games majorly borrow from science fiction or fantasy world with hard-core players also termed as intensive players (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, 2015).
The online games fall in different types namely classic board games, PC or console games, multiplayer games, and entertainment games. Classic board as well as card games are mainly accessible through web portals like Yahoo, AOL, and MSN. The internet platform allows individuals to play certain games for instance Bridge, Chess as well as Poker, chat and monitor scores simultaneously. Console or PC games have a network option that helps to maintain scores, update the games and download patches. Multiplier games are persistent allowing players to play either as individuals or as a team in a world that is virtually evolving. Some of the multiplier games allow users to create their game, build characters, and manage active controls with installed options for creativity. Finally, the entertainment games provide platforms for the players to learn, train, and interact with various applications (Galarneau, 2015).
In America, 58% of the people play online games with adults constituting 62% of active players. 68% of the people who play video games are aged above eighteen years while the proportion of the female gamers has rapidly grown to constitute 45% of all the players (Entertainment Software Association, 2014). On average, every household has two gamers and 51% of the households have a minimum of one console. Online gaming has several advantages as well as disadvantages in equal measure some of which are discussed below. The continued expansion of coverage by the internet associated with a growing uptake has created a platform upon which people are able to enjoy several types of entertainment (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, 2015).
Advantages of online gaming
In the first place, online gaming provides an opportunity to socialize with playmates either remotely located or across the internet. This allows exchange of a great deal of social information amongst users that enhances their social wellbeing as they play the games. Secondly, online games are competitive and require users to employ their intellect in order to beat their opponents. Undoubtedly, the players are able to expand their intellectual capacity by engaging in online games that involve competing with other players (Galarneau, 2015).
In addition, some of the games provide an opportunity for learning that helps the users to understand real-life situations. For instance, a game may provide a flight simulation or an emergency situation involving the use of a certain machine thus equipping the player with the capacity to handle similar situations when they occur in real life. Similarly, such simulations also help the players to develop interest in various real life aspects which they end up learning as they advance their skills in playing the games (Entertainment Software Association, 2014).
Moreover, the games help to improve one’s coordination between the eyes and hands especially those that create situations that require very rapid actions. In the same dimension, online games help improve the player’s reaction time as he/she harnesses skills for playing the games. The games provide a great deal of entertainment for the players as they strive to complete various tasks created by the game or compete to beat their opponents. Finally, kids who play these games become very sharp and active mentally while they learn creative ways to manage time through the completion of the time limited tasks provided by the online games (Galarneau, 2015).
Disadvantages of online gaming
Several games are designed for one player at a time thus isolates an individual from his or her family during the time of playing the games thus inhibiting positive interactions. Online gaming is very addictive and the players consume several hours as they get carried away by the tasks set for them. Consequently, they become less productive in all other aspects of their livelihoods due to the constant obsession with the games. In addition, playing the games requires the players to constantly use eyes, wrists, and thumbs in one position thus resulting strains of the eyes, muscles, physical problems, and other soft tissue injuries (Entertainment Software Association, 2014).
The online games diminish the players’ physical activity and promote storage of lots of energy in the body thus posing a greater risk to certain health problems associated with physical inactivity like diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular conditions. Some of the games are very costly to both install and play thus can pose financial challenges if not well managed. Using the internet to download the games may provide an avenue for viruses and other harmful programs to invade and destroy the computer systems thus higher maintenance costs. Finally, the internet platform provides an opportunity for other users who may bully kids as they look for options to edge their competitors so that they easily gain victory. This can negatively impact on the growth and development of kids who may also be dealing with other issues such as stigma at any one time (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, 2015).
Online gaming is no doubt a great source of entertainment for people across all the age groups. The online gaming industry has rapidly grown over the past few years and continues to generate much interest amongst users as an avenue for entertainment. In addition to being a great source of fun for the players, online games have several advantages and disadvantages that need to be clearly understood. This review has examined those advantages as well as disadvantages for online gaming.
Entertainment Software Association. (2014). Essential Facts About the Computer and Video Game Industry. Retrieved May 30, 2016, from Gaming Statistics: < http://www.theesa.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/ESA-Essential-Facts-2015.pdf
Galarneau, L. (2015). Global Gaming Statistics. Retrieved May 30, 2016, from Trends and Statistics: <http://www.bigfishgames.com/blog/2014-global-gaming-stats-whos-playing- what-and-why/>
Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. (2015). Digital Broadband Content: The Online Computer and Video Game Industr. Paris: Directorate for Science, Technology, and Industry Committee for Information, Computer and Communication Policy.