Patience Obi-Wan! The Importance of Strategy in Gaming

by Contributing Columnist
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Of the many gaming skills we have under our belts, strategy is the most important trait that will determine victory. Strategy is one of those things that aren’t necessarily taught, but it’s something that we learn when we start to develop our gaming skills. Some people may be of the old school thought that they need to complete the game from beginning to end without saving it. But strategy tests something beyond our immediate reactions; it helps us in the long-term. But what can we do to implement a winning strategy in our gaming experiences? And, what are the lessons that we can learn from it?

It’s Not All About the Attack

Whether it’s a fighting game or a shoot ’em up, we may think that if we just hold down the fire button we will get through the levels easily. But this is where we have to learn from the people who strategize for a living. If you looked at someone like international poker player Paul Phua and his strategies for surviving the game of poker, it’s not all about going in all guns blazing. It can be easy to overcompensate for a lack of skill by launching a continuous attack, but this is when we expose ourselves to our weaknesses. It is the very first and best lesson of strategy that we all need to get under our belts.

Balancing Multiple Needs

Having the right structure to defend yourself is as important as moving forward in any game. While many games require you to move forward and to control more space, either by progressing in the game or getting more kills, you need to have the right structure and consider a multitude of components and then decide on the move that will serve everybody. Look at the game like League of Legends; it’s not just about getting lots of kills, it is a team game that doesn’t rely on individual skill.

Keeping Calm

Panic is our go-to emotion when we are losing. In any game, it could be easy to panic when we suffer a setback, and when you suffer anything, you start to expose your weaknesses in your actions. You do something that you wouldn’t have necessarily done when you are focused and calm. And whether you are playing a game that requires group dynamics or playing something on your own, learning to keep calm despite the myriad of pressures will give you a better chance of achieving your objectives. We can feel the pressure, especially when we have one life left, and even if we end up losing, we have still learned a valuable lesson in keeping calm so we can use the right move.

Strategy is a skill that serves us well in every type of game. Whether you are playing chess or Sonic the Hedgehog, you can benefit from having a plethora of strategic skills that balance multiple needs, focuses on defense as well as attack, but also keeps you calm in these environments. Hopefully, we’ve all learned from the Leeroy Jenkins debacle by now!

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