Video games are popular today and have been for the last 30 years. People enjoy playing them and there are various reasons why. When looking at the obvious ones, entertainment comes to mind. But more often than not, it is not only entertainment that motivates gamers to play.
What else can be the reason for people playing video games?
There are plenty of reasons, but from the perspective of psychology, it becomes even more interesting. Let us examine what psychology has to say about it.
Dopamine – It Is Everywhere
Instant gratification is one of the main motivators for people. It is one of the reasons why people spend a lot of time on social media. Every like is a hit of dopamine, while a small one, it is still a hit and we as humans, love dopamine.
Video games do similar things, especially online games. Every kill, assist, outplay, everything gives you dopamine. Sometimes, your heart starts racing and you never even think twice about it. Getting a dopamine hit is amazing, and video games are a great source of it.
Entertainment – We Like to Play
As children, we often enjoy playing with other children, or with toys. It is not strange, then, that we also enjoy playing when we grow up. Video games are fun and it is what we use to entertain ourselves when we are tired from television and other media.
Media can be fun, but you can choose what to play and when what kind of experience you are going to get. The choice matters, which is why many turn to gaming.
Escapism – Reality can be Tough
Some people like to close their eyes and pretend that the world is not like it is. Tough at times, life can give us lemons and while some people make lemonade, others play video games and escape into a world where they are empowered.
Every RPG sets you up to be a lot more able than the average person, not to mention that you can make important decisions that can affect the lives of others, even an entire galaxy. While some of it is escapism, another is a simple desire for change.
Professional Interest – Esports Athletes
Some people play video games for a living. Professional athletes play video games and enjoy doing it. Even after finishing their professional careers, some of them become streamers and still play their game. With a large audience, they can make a living from it, at least for a while.
Streamers play video games, basically living from their audience and their skill in the game, or personality while entertaining their audience while playing the game. Whether as an active professional or a streamer, games can also be a profession.
Video games are played for many reasons, whether dopamine, pleasure, entertainment, escapism, or for professional reasons, not to mention addiction. There will be more studies regarding gaming, personalities, and excessive gaming, as the industry keeps developing and becoming more popular.