While it is true that the main purpose of video games is entertainment, they have grown to be so much more. The advancement in technology that has occurred because people wanted to make more immersive and enjoyable games has opened many productive pathways for human-machine interaction. As of right now, the budget of the video game industry is on par and sometimes even more than the TV or film industry, despite being not so mainstream as the latter. Now, let us take a look at some of the examples of how some developments or events in video games aided the advancement in the real world.
Cognitive and Social Benefits
Despite people calling video games a waste of time, there has been credible research on how video games improve the social skills, and memory for people; this effect is even more beneficial for those who have some sort of limitation. Examples of this can be games improving the memory for the elderly who have Alzheimer’s disease, gaming can enable children with autism to make new friends and if you want to find the most effective way to relieve stress then games will help you in that regard. More research has found out that playing online video games improves how people work together in groups to achieve a single objective, it increases their leadership skills and how dedicated they should be to their respective roles. It helps with young adults with their everyday stress, depression and increases their empathy. Also, young girls who are fond of gaming are three times more likely to pursue a degree in the STEM fields.
Microsoft’s Adaptive Controllers
This innovative device was developed by the company with the help of an idea by a veteran gamer who had mobility problems. The development of the controller started out as a part project of two hackathons organized by Microsoft with the central focus for being something that will help gamers with disabilities. The design of the controller includes two large programmable buttons and 19 jacks that offer connectivity to various devices for gaming on either your Xbox or gaming PC. Microsoft is planning to use these adaptive controllers in rehab centers so that the elderly who have limited mobility are able to play video games again, this helps in activities that will focus on therapeutic aid and improve things like hand-eye coordination, muscle memory, and social interaction.
Detecting Alzheimer’s Disease
Sea Hero Quest is a VR game that has been designed in a way that could detect signs of Alzheimer’s Disease in players. The game has the players navigating and controlling a boat where they would have to pass it through a series of checkpoints before they could reach the final destinations. However, the memory comes into play here as the checkpoints are shown on a map that is only revealed to the player at the starting of their journey. After they have observed the points, they will have to rely on their memory of where the checkpoints could be to get through. The game was developed by people from Germany’s Deutsche Telekom, Glitchers (a game studio) and several universities across Europe. It allowed identification of early symptoms of diseases or conditions such as dementia or Alzheimer’s that the conventional medical tests weren’t able to detect.
Training with Virtual Reality
A major development of how training and meetings could be conducted for a business is the implementation of Virtual Reality (VR). The Oculus for Business is part of a major update designed for this purpose, it comes with a new suite that will help the employees learn and make use of VR at work. Businesses, startups, and various organizations have been keen to make use of this interactive technology because of the major advantages it offers, these include the convenience of travel, meaning that you would need to go out and drive to the office if you could just conduct a meeting from your home and another advantage is how the workers could be trained in various skills. An example of this could be with the surgeons, where VR would speed up their ability to learn procedures without taking up so many resources, other companies that use VR to train skills are Walmart and NFL.