The Covid-19 lockdowns have been tough on everyone. People have felt isolated from their work colleagues, friends, and family and all of their usual daily living routines and experiences. While it appears that the worst of the outbreak is now behind us, there is still a long way to go before we return to our pre-pandemic lives. We now live in a world where people are queuing and taking selfies of themselves having vaccinations!
What is interesting is what has got people through the loneliness and isolation of the lockdowns. For some people, it was learning to bake banana bread and sourdough; for others, it was a complete renovation for their homes. For many, it was gaming. Even those who were not particularly interested in the pastime prior to the pandemic found it useful at times and continue to do so. Let us look at why and how.
It takes our mind off things
When the world is a little bit stressful, having something else to focus on can be a welcome distraction. For some people, going on a long run helps. For others, it is getting immersed in a book. For gamers, it is playing their favorite video game. While it is important not to rely on it as a method of distraction, it can be really useful.
It can encourage interaction and socialisation
Computer games, often rather unfairly, have a reputation for being a singular, isolating activity. Of course, it can be, but it can also encourage people, particularly those who may otherwise struggle with face to face socialization and interaction even in a pre-covid world, to talk to others. They can chat online in the game itself, in forums, join gaming groups, play with their friends and it also gives them a common topic to talk about.
It can give you a sense of control
Throughout the height of the pandemic, lots of people were understandably anxious about the situation. There was so much that we could not control, and this led to a huge rise in mental health issues. One way that gaming can help with this is by giving the user back some sort of control. They have agency over how they play, what they do in the game, and how they respond to a situation, something that has been missing from many of our real lives for a while now.
It can stimulate the brain
Again, gaming has a bad reputation in this area as something that involves sitting doing not very much thinking, but in most cases, that is far from true. A lot of games involve problem-solving, critical thinking, spatial navigation, strategic planning, and fine motor skills, especially those involving VR (virtual reality), such as the sort of games DMG hopes to become an industry leader in. For those who have been stuck at home, gaming is a great way to keep the brain ticking over!