Do video games turn your brain to mush?

Video Games: Intelligent or Idiotic?

Video Games: Intelligent or Idiotic?

Luke Pires and Nicolas Ramos

A lot of adults believe that there is a direct correlation of playing video games and a lack of intelligence. This ‘myth’ or ‘urban legend’, if you will, is incorrect. It is television that causes this, and since most people see television and video games to be similar, they expect the same results. There is a large difference, however. In television’s case, all the user does is sit and is fed the results. Video games make it so the player is always on their toes. They use reflexes, puzzle-solving and much more to reach the goal.

Another big question is why do kids enjoy playing video games? Based on survey results, the majority of children enjoy playing video games to escape reality. If they had a stressful day, or are feeling a little down, sometimes escaping to a magical world where you can fly through mountains or drive a motorcycle into a cyclops is just what they need. Even adults play video games, and some even make a living out of it by posting videos to Youtube.

An interview with a good friend of mine, August Pfeilsticker, further proves the theory. He stated he had all A’s in school AND plays a lot of video games, like League of Legends, an attack strategy game, Super Smash Brothers, a fighting game that tests instincts and reflexes, and Splatoon 2, a team-based warfare that relies on teamwork. He plays for about 30 minutes  a day. In response to if it gets in the way of schoolwork, August responded, “No, not really” and it doesn’t ever come before schoolwork.

If you ask me, I’d say the best type of video game to play is a strategy turn-based game. These games work a lot like chess, where one team moves their players across the map to attack the other team. A great example of this is the recent bestselling (and even a little confusing) “Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle” for the Nintendo Switch. This game has won over fifty awards including the “Best of E3” award.  I personally own this game and I actually even felt a little smarter playing it. You constantly need to be thinking at least two steps ahead for each of your three team members. Team member selection matters a lot as well. Do you like slow, hard-hitting heavyweights or do you prefer agile support characters? The choice is ultimately yours.

To recap, we have busted the myth of there being an direct correlation between video games and stupidity. They do, however, increase strength in other parts of the brain. This was originally just television, but it spread into the topic of video games. Video games can relieve stress, and even bring happiness. So I can finally say video games do NOT turn your brain to mush.