With no disrespect for my fellow writer Mr. C. Rich, it is very apparent he is not a gamer nor does he understand the world of gaming. We have come a long way from a little green dot and a paddle. I too remember the Atari, in fact I still own one and it works just fine. But like time, I advanced as each system hit the market. The mighty Nintendo, Sega Genesis, PlayStation 1, 2,and 3, the Game Cube, the Xbox, Xbox360 and soon the new virtual reality Xbox that works with your movements and no controller.
The system known as the Wii has not only become popular among the gamers it is being used in places like aerobic centers, hospitals by therapists and senior homes and promotes fitness. You can do everything from normal exercises to downhill and cross-country skiing, even swimming, sports and bowling. It’s putting the ‘fun’ back into exercising for kids and adults. I actually pulled a muscle in my arm once playing sports on the system. You have to stand up and physically swing or move accordingly depending on what sport your playing and you work up a sweat when cross country skiing.
Some systems let you battle friends and strangers online. Take Dance Dance Revolution made for the Xbox 360.You place your pad down on the floor, log into the system and account then enter into a dance battle with someone that is located in China or Australia. The song starts and you have to step on certain colors, not only in time to the music, but also while watching the screen to make sure you follow the steps of the dance correctly, getting faster with each level until someone fails by not reaching a certain score or loses a certain number of stages. What keeps Gamers interested in this type of exercise gaming are the leader boards. After a battle, you’re entered on to worldwide leader board and the goal is to become the top-ranking player in the world. Often there are live competitions around the world you can enter and compete for money and prizes.
Some games teach you hand eye coordination. Some teach you not only how to read and write music, but how to actually play instruments. And some are for entertainment purposes only. The virtual world of gaming is a society of its own. There is nothing like dawning your headset and mic, logging in and talking to other gamers around the world about news, events, and of course the game you’re playing, discussing tactics if you’re on a team or helping each other get past a part of a game you may be stuck on. Some Gamers have had friendships with people for years and have never met in person, no different then joining a blog site or forum on the computer. Gamers socialize with more people than an average person does in the real world. True gamers will often have over 100 people on a friends list that they interact with on weekly and even on a daily basis. How many people in the world outside of gaming can claim they have more then five friends they speak to daily?
But I do have to agree with Mr. C. Rich that games can never replace the fresh air from going outside or the feeling from human contact one can get just by shaking the hand of a friend. Most Gamers I know have jobs so they can buy the new games and systems that come out on the market. But there are those who make Gamers look bad by sitting around and not going out to find a job, sucking the life out of the welfare system and living off food stamps. But then again, these types of people can be found in every walk of life and society, so why should the virtual gamer society be any different.
My dear friend and fellow writer, I am sad to say that with the technological world we live in and the advancements they make every day for the future, the gamers will be more prepared and literally be able to adapt to the future better than we ever could. They will be the ones behind the controls of the unmanned airplanes of the future, fighting wars with experience from the war games they grew up on. And while we are still in the classroom trying to figure out how to even turn on the systems they will be the robot soldiers that are controlled by those who grew up on the virtual gaming of motion sensor movement, never having to leave a control booth. They will never having to worry about being grazed by a bullet or biological warfare. When you look at the future from a Gamer’s perspective, it may not be a bad future after all and there will be no shortage of experience when it comes to running the world from a push of a button.