Playing ForREal Why the Gaming Community should be taken seriously

The Point to Gaming

Remember the days when you were younger, and your parents wanted you to do all your homework before you went outside to play? If not, maybe your parents were the type that wanted you to complete all your chores before you played video games on the TV. The aspect of entertainment always seem to come after the term "work." Today, however entertainment can be in the workplace, especially when it comes to gaming. Society has reached a point where technology is insurmountable and is somewhat part of everyone's daily life. The video game community has come along way as a product of the technology age and has become a source of employment for most. Nevertheless, the video gaming community is still not taken as seriously as it should be because it is just seen as a mere medium for entertainment. The video gaming community should be taken more seriously because it enhances certain skills based off the different games that could be played by a gamer, gives some players a source of income, and opens up a variety of different opportunities for those who play video games online.

A Skill Enhancer...

The first reason why the gaming community should be taken more seriously is because being part of the community can enhance the skills of its members. Certain games that gaming communities indulge in can beneficially alter how players look at the real world. For instance, playing action games, where scripted moments can be intense and quick, can enhance a players coordination and thinking on the fly. Studies from Green and Bavelier's "Brain on Video Games" have illustrated that playing action video games have resulted in "behavioural benefits, including enhancements in low-level vision, visual attention, speed of processing and statistical inference, among others." This conveys that those who play action video games are more likely to have enhancement of skills that they can use in their daily lives outside of gaming. These enhancements are due to the constant practicing of human to human interaction through a simulator.

There are many skills that being part of a gaming community can enhance. Nevertheless, the most important skill that being part of this community can magnify is communication. When playing online gaming, there are normally two groups of gamers going head to head with one another to achieve an objective. For example, in the military shooting game, Battlefield 1, there are two teams of 32 players playing as soldiers on a battlefield. The leader has to communicate with his team in order to lead their group to be the first to achieve an objective. In "Computers of Human Behavior" written by Ho and Huang, they state that "leaders help members feel the credibility and continuous maintenance of the [gaming community], further encouraging them to interact actively." Leaders maintain their groups by communicating effectively with their members on the virtual battlefield. By being part of the gaming community, you automatically boost your communication skills by playing online and eventually becoming a leader of a virtual world.

Games are an enhancement to human skills

Employed to play!

Another reason that the video gaming community should be taken more seriously is because it is now a way for some players to have a source of income. In this era of technology video game communities have expanded into companies that provide reviews, awards, and even walk-throughs for the immense amount of games that come out every year. For example, IGN is a thriving gaming company that post reviews and game plays of some of the top games of the year. Within IGN are paid game designers, game testers, and writers all part of the gaming community. In Crosby's "Working so others can play: Jobs in video game development," she states that the "demand for video games is rising, and the industry is growing. Sales of game software generated more than $6 billion last year, according to NPD Interactive Entertainment Service, a market research group based in New York." Crosby's statement proves that the gaming community should be looked at more seriously because of all the money and business it is obtaining in this new tech era.

Gaming companies = Gaming Communities

Gaming Glows

The final reason why the video game community should be taken more seriously is because it provides unique opportunities for plenty of players. Today's gaming is very competitive and social with the addition of online play. Playing online enables players to talk to and engage with other gamers across the globe. With this innovation in gaming, players can host tournaments for money and even gain a surplus of friends that they never have to meet face to face. In "Leadership in Multiplayer Online Gaming Environments," the authors Lisk, Kaplincali, and Riggio discuss how online gaming puts an emphasis on leadership and tactics. All of these things are needed when controlling a team of other players across the world. This evidence conveys that being part of the video gaming community opens up endless doors of opportunities to meet new people and experience new things.

SO why Oppose games....

The video gaming community is a very serious classification with many benefits to its members. Nevertheless, there are others who view video game players as people who are lazy and have nothing else better to do with their lives. Others also believe that video games of this era are very violent and could lead some people inspired to do harm to others. In a survey included within the journal, "I Am Right, You Are Wrong," over half of the 662 people surveyed believed that violent video games causes an increase in aggression for players. However, this is not the case according to an experiment demonstrated by the psychologists Bartholow and Sestir. In their "Journal of Experimental Social Psychology" it states that after a short 15 minute delay, "violent game players showed decreased aggressive thoughts, feelings and behavior, whereas nonviolent game players showed increases in these outcomes." This study conveys that violent video games are really a source to release aggression for its players.

Gamers Glory

Others fail to realize that the gaming community is indeed a group filled with competitiveness and fun. Members of the gaming community range in all types of ages. In the article, "I Am Right, You Are Wrong" it states that 97% of American teens play video games, but the average age for a gamer is 35. With the gaming era starting in the 1970's, the average age of gamers is expected to increase even more as the gaming world has expanded year by year. With the innovation of motion gaming, such as the Xbox Connect or the Playstation Move, members of the gaming community are also more fit than ever. With the expansion and benefits of the gaming community, it is obvious that it should be taken seriously.

Gamers playing Dance Central: A game where you dance to earn Points

Game Over

As you can see the video game community should be taken seriously because it enhances players skills, gives players a source of income, and opens up doors filled with opportunities. Being a gamer in this new generation has become more than just entertainment. Today, gaming is now a job for some of us members. It is also a way to interact with people across every country of the world. Some people still believe that the gaming community is just a bunch of lazy people trying to gain recognition. Nevertheless, these people fail to realize that gamers today are now businessmen, children, parents, college students, and even CEOs. The days of putting work over entertainment is over with the growth of video games. The gaming community is now among us all and it should be no reason why we shouldn't be taken seriously.


Annotated Bibliography

  • Bavelier, Daphne, et al. "Brains on Video Games." Nature Reviews.Neuroscience, vol. 12, no. 12, 2011., pp. 763-8doi: This journal entry talks about the effects video games have on human lives. It touches many questions people ask about playing video games such as whether video games can enhance human skills or does playing video games have a negative effect on brain behavior. According to the journal entry, video games have more positive effects on players than negative. For instance, the journal explains how playing video games can drive positive neurological changes in the brain system. These changes can lead to improvement in decision making and problem solving. However, the article does argue very good points on how video games can be negative to human lives. For example, it says that video games largest audience, children, are more likely to do poor in education if they play video games for a long time.
  • Crosby, Olivia. “Working so Others Can Play: Jobs in Video Game Development.” Occupational Outlook Quarterly., 1ADAD, pp. 2 DB - eLibrary. This article touches on the different employments of the video game industry. There are many career fields in gaming. According to the article, these career fields consist of game designers, artists, sound designers, programmers, game testers and more. These career fields earn up to 80,000 dollars annually and is steadily increasing with the growing demand of video games. The article goes as far as to explaining each job title and what are there specific duties. For instance, this source explains game designers as the people who design the stories and the plot for the video games. There job however is not easy because they have to have the story written from different angles to accommodate for the different ways players would play the game.
  • Gentile , Douglas A. “The Multiple Dimensions of Video Game Effects.” Wiley Online Library , Blackwell Publishing Ltd. , 10 May 2011, This article discusses the different effects of playing video games. According to the article there are 5 dimensions that come into play when talking about the effects of playing video games. These 5 dimensions are the amount of play, content of play, the game context, the structure of the game, and the mechanics of game play. The article continuous to explain these dimensions so that its readers can decide for themselves if the effects of playing is good or bad. This article also includes a lot of useful statistics about video games in general. For instance, one of the studies in the article stated that surgeons who played video games at least 3 hours a week were 27% faster and made 37% fewer errors on surgeries. This article may leave it to the reader to decide whether games have a good or bad effect, but it provides good evidence to support why playing video games are good for people.
  • Greitemeyer, Tobias. “I Am Right, You Are Wrong: How Biased Assimilation Increases the Perceived Gap between Believers and Skeptics of Violent Video Game Effects.” I Am Right, You Are Wrong: How Biased Assimilation Increases the Perceived Gap between Believers and Skeptics of Violent Video Game Effects, Plos One , 10 Apr. 2014, In this article, the author discusses whether violence in video games causes aggression in its players. This article contains a lot of surveys and data charts to illustrate how random people feel about violence in video games. Each section of this article explains the statistics of the different groups surveyed, such as by gender or those who changed their mind about violent video games later on in the survey process. It turns out a lot of people believe that violence in video games is the cause of most aggression in players. According to this article, out of the 662 people surveyed, 397 people people agreed that violence in games are indeed the source to player aggression, while the other 265 believed other wise. This article conveys how people think about the violence shoved into so many games and the negative behavior it influences on its players.
  • Ho , Shu-Hsun, and Chiung-Hui Huang. “Exploring Success Factors of Video Game Communities in Hierarchical Linear Modeling: The Perspectives of Members and Leaders.” Computers in Human Behavior , vol. 25, no. 3, May 2009, pp. 761–769. This journal goes into how playing video games create social hierarchy. These hierarchy consist of a leader and members. According to the journal entry, the leader is chosen by the members, as he/she displays good communication and management of the virtual community. On the other hand, as members of the virtual community, you are suppose to show loyalty and usefulness to the leader. Together, the leader and members are suppose to work as a team to achieve a certain goal of the video game. Without communication and tactics, the team is bound to lose the battle or fail the objective. This journal entry contains a lot of statistical data as well. For instance, the article states that the video game industry is expected to grow from $30 billion dollars in 2006 to $47 billion in 2009. The growth of the virtual community has seen a huge increase in leaders and members.
  • Lee, Chiawen et al. “Effects of College Students' Video Gaming Behavior on Self-Concept Clarity and Flow.” Social Behavior and Personality: an International Journal, vol. 40, no. 4, 2012, p. 673. doi:10.2224/sbp.2012.40.4.673. In this journal entry, the authors discuss how video games effect the behavior of college students. This journal entry focused on the term "self-concept clarity." People with low self concept clarity are normally dependent and have no self awareness; while people with self concept clarity are confident and independent. According to this journal entry, people who play video games are presented with simple task with many ways to go about solving them. With scenarios like this, players are able to build on their self-concept clarity by finding out what they like and dislike to build upon their self. However, later into the journal entry, two types of college students were tested. One group were college gamers and the other were not. Based of the results, both had the same self concept clarity score even though it is hypothesized that gamers are suppose to have higher self awareness than non gamers.
  • Lisk, Timothy C et al. “Leadership in Multiplayer Online Gaming Environments.” Simulation Gaming , vol. 43, no. 1, 5 Mar. 2012, pp. 133–149. In "Leadership in Multiplayer Online Gaming," the authors discuss how players build relationship through the innovation of online gaming. Later in the article, it focuses on the concept of leadership and what are the traits that normally associate with a leader. According to the article, a leader has to be charismatic and able to adapt to change in an instant. Following the overall concept of leadership, the authors began to talk about leadership in video games. It presents that there are games specifically made for leadership development. These games put players in different scenarios where they have to come up with the best solution as variants change. There is also online gaming, such as the World of Warcraft, where leaders develop themselves through their followers/members. The article even has a section specifically talking about the world of gaming in general. This is another source that discusses the growth of the gaming world.
  • Sestir, Marc A., and Bruce D. Bartholow. "Violent and Nonviolent Video Games Produce Opposing Effects on Aggressive and Prosocial Outcomes." Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, vol. 46, no. 6, 2010., pp. 934-942doi:10.1016/j.jesp.2010.06.005. In this journal entry, the authors discuss the affect of violence in video games to its players. This source seems to take the route of arguing that violence in video games are in fact a source to less aggression. The journal entry talks about how a slight delay in time after studying players aggression can determine whether violence in video games are good for its players. According to the studies the authors presented, people who play violent video games are less aggressive than those who play non-violent video games after a 15 minute delay in testing. This journal entry also argues that people who play non-violent video games become curious to that of violence and eventually want to indulge in some form of danger. On the other hand, those who do play violent video games have already experienced their minds curiosity through the violent actions of the game.
  • “The Evolution Of Xbox Hardware,” director. YouTube, 7 Jan. 2016, This is a video explaining the history of the gaming console, Xbox. The Xbox was made by the popular Microsoft company. The video goes into detail when Microsoft made the first Xbox. Microsoft didn't enter the gaming era until 2001. Even though the company was late producing a gaming system, the Xbox still took the world by storm. According to the video, the Xbox could make games run on a HD setting even before high definition was considered for TVs. Microsoft has made 3 Xbox systems and plans to make more. The video also goes on to tell the specification of each system that was released up to the present time period. It also explains how the Xbox rose up into popularity and what games are its most memorable. One of these games include Halo, which was one of the first big multiplayer shooters ever.
  • “The Evolution Of Playstation Hardware,” director. YouTube, 7 Jan. 2016, This is a video explaining the history of the gaming console, Playstation. The Playstation was made by the popular entertainment company, Sony. According to the video, there are 4 Playstations that have been released ever since Sony took part in the gaming era back in 1995. The video goes into detail to show all 4 consoles made by Sony. It also list the specification of all the Playstations to be released up to the present. Most of the abilities the systems included were very unique to the time they were released. For example, the Playstation 2, which was released in 2000 was the first gaming console that could play DVDs. This video also list the most popular games exclusive to Playstation which eventually brought the gaming system to fame. Some of these gaming titles include "Uncharted" which brought a movie like adventure to its players and the classic "Crash Banditcoot" with its wacky gameplay perfect for children.

Photo Essay

The video gaming community is very diverse including multitudes of different races, age groups, and even types of players. There are many gaming consoles created by different companies. For example, Sony, the company associated with making TVs and high end earphones, are also known for all the different generations of Playstation gaming systems. On the other hand you have Microsoft, another big company associated with producing the Windows computer programs and cellphones, are also known for creating the Xbox gaming system. With the Playstation and Xbox alone, you have two immense group of gamers part of one overall gaming community.

The video game community is important to me because it can portray a player’s unique style while also sharing that style with other gamers of different backgrounds. For example, I have been a gamer ever sense I was little and I have already owned my favorite color controllers and have even created plenty of profiles displaying what type of gamer I am. In doing so I have made plenty of friends whom most I haven’t met face to face. As a 20 year old, I have been a gamer for over a decade now and have enjoyed every last year of it. I have made lifelong gaming friends with people in different countries, such as Europe and China, and have no clue what they look like. However, with the power of the gaming communities, I know the personality of each and every one of my gaming friends.

My very own gaming experience


Reflective Piece

I have learned a lot about digital writing this semester as part of the ENG 201 course. I have learned to have a purpose when writing so that my audience can have an exact reason for reading my essay. I have also learned to support the argument of my text with oppositions to give my paper a sense of diversity and depth. With the Advocacy Project, I was able to fulfill more of the learning objectives established in this course. For example, one of the learning objectives is the ability to position oneself within a public conversation and to compose a logical argument supported by research. I fulfill this objective in my Advocacy Project by supporting my overall argument, which is that the video gaming community should be taken more seriously, with reliable sources. For instance, one of the main points of my essay is that the gaming community should be taken more seriously because it is a source of income for most gamers. I back up this argument by including evidence explaining the amount of money gaming companies that are led by gaming communities make.

Another learning objective that I fulfill in my Advocacy Project is the ability to formulate a research question. I demonstrate this learning objective by including my research question in the sub-header of my title block. My research question, which is why the gaming community should be taken seriously, is simple and arguable so that my readers can follow the main points of my paper smoothly.

By formulating a research question, I was able to fulfill another learning objective as well. This learning objective includes the ability to write for an audience with a purpose within a genre suitable to assignment guidelines. Producing my research question enabled me to have a purpose for my essay. I was able to inform my audience why the gaming community should be taken seriously by generating three main points. I also included an opposition paragraph explaining why some people believe that gaming shouldn’t be taken seriously so that my audience can get a better since as to why I am writing this essay.


Created with images by josip2 - "Game Over" • SS Games Online - "MAG - 2" • qiye - "xbox game handle" • jklugiewicz - "controller games video" • blakespot - "PS4" • tandemsystemsltd - "Console Controllers" • Noodles and Beef - "Phil at IGN" • Doug Kline - "E3 2011 - Dance Central 2"

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