National Video Games Day

Apparently it’s National Video Games Day.¬†While this “holiday” is simply one of many superfluous holidays¬†that seem to be attributed to every single day on the calendar, I thought it would be a great opportunity to finally talk about video games on this little blog of mine.

Now, many people are often surprised when I’m outed as a gamer. I guess I don’t seem the type to spend hours in front of a screen playing the life of a made-up person, creature, or robot. Honestly, I always find it surprising that others are surprised.

As a lover of stories, video games have always seemed like a natural fit for my interests. You see, I’m drawn to story-rich games, simulations, and RPGs. Unlike when reading a book where the plot is set in stone, in a game I get to interact with the story and co-create it as I play.

I know, I know–tons of people love to criticize video games. They say it’s a waste of time, that you’ll kill your brain cells, or become more violent. Well I say “bologna!” There are all sorts of studies that show that video games help hand-eye coordination, decision making skills, and creativity.

For me, gaming is also a great stress reliever. As someone who lives with mental illness everyday, it can be great to step into the shoes of someone else for a while. Or the repetitive actions of some games can be soothing. Plus, the soundtracks of video games are often specifically created to be relaxing and to help you focus (unless you’re about to face a boss, then it gets suspenseful).

But I wasn’t always comfortable acknowledging my love of video games. When I was younger I would get really nervous to go to the store and buy a game. I always felt like it was something for boys only and that I must have been a weirdo for wanting the new pokemon. Now I know that’s a ridiculous notion to hold onto. Gaming is for anyone and everyone.

So happy Video Games Day! And keep your eye out for more video-game related content on this blog of mine that refuses to follow any specific niche no matter how hard I try.