There are many types of computer games and video games. The two most common video game systems on the market today are Nintendo Wii and Sony PlayStation. Computer games can be single player and multi-player in which one player controls various characters in a game (the characters can be controlled by the computer) while the other player plays the game using a keyboard or some other form of input device. A multiplayer online role playing game, or MMORPG, has characters that interact with each other within a virtual world. MMORPGs are played on a dedicated server (a “dedicated” server is a type of internet service provider’s server that is used exclusively for a single website, whereas a “shared” server is a type of internet service provider’s server that is used by many websites). Some online games, including World of Warcraft and Eve Online, use a “social” aspect with multiple participants all interacting with each other through various methods.
Computer games are often packaged with various accessories. Accessories for playing video or electronic games may include memory cards, digital cameras, speakers, headphones, USB drives, game pads, and gaming keyboards. Many modern consoles offer video output capabilities comparable to that found in high-end home theater systems. Video gaming also utilizes several forms of electronic media, such as CD-ROMs, CD-Rs ( cassettes), DVD-R (widescreen or vertical replicas of original DVD material) and Blu-Ray Discs. In addition to using up space on a computer, these mediums of gaming media consume precious storage resources.
While playing video or electronic games provides a fun, safe outlet for entertainment, many children have found themselves becoming excessively addicted to them. Adolescents experience a true addiction when playing computer and video games that require them to perform difficult task after difficult task in order to advance to higher levels. While playing online games, children have been known to spend countless hours navigating their way through virtual worlds, completing tasks, and solving puzzles in order to progress through the game. Their level of skill usually does not reflect their real world ability to problem solve. As a result, there have been numerous reports of young adults, teens, and children suffering from various diseases after spending excessive time playing online.
One of the most widely played games on the internet is Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game, better known as MMORPG. This type of video game requires players to form a massively networked group in order to engage in virtual combat, exploration, trading, and socializing. Players take turns engaging in these activities with each other. The basic game play involves exploring a virtual world in which the player’s character fights against the opposition using a variety of weapons and magical items the use of which are obtained by acquiring loot. When a player becomes bored with the current activities in which they are participating in, they can enter a combat zone in which they can engage in hand to hand combat.
Video gaming addiction has taken the form of a new sub-genre on the increasingly popular gaming platform called Virtual Reality. In Virtual Reality, gamers use virtually based “environments” in order to complete missions and accomplish goals. This is much different than traditional computer games where the goal is completion of a sequence of tasks. With Virtual Reality, gamers often have the option to “use” tools and gadgets within the environment in order to advance the storyline or complete challenges. This type of gaming is widely popular among younger audiences and it is expected that the trends currently underway in the video games industry will continue to expand the scope of available gaming experiences.
Computer and video games are truly revolutionizing how people interact, both as a group and individually. Both games stimulate the minds and bodies of gamers. Gamers today do more than simply blast away at enemies on their gaming consoles; they connect with friends and family via a variety of communication and networking technologies, such as Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace. These advancements in technology have allowed gaming to transcend borders and unite global communities. In the future, the rapid expansion of the electronic games industry may cause many of today’s computer and video games to become obsolete, as more individuals will experience the same types of excitement and satisfaction gained from playing a good game.