Kids and Video Games: Is it always a negative thing?
In this day and age it’s not uncommon to hear statements like “kids are glued to the screen”, “they’re addicted to their phone” or that “video games are too violent!”. Whilst there are certainly some problems associated with the younger generation growing up in a world where technology is everywhere, it is not all bad.
Having a generation that has been raised with mobiles, laptops, tablets and so on means that things become easy. They are quick when it comes to learning how to use a new piece of technology, they can teach parents/grandparents how to use it and they are familiar with the existing technology already. With this in mind, Totem Learning find that making the shift from generic video games to learning games is not that challenging. Our game, ‘Unlock: Employability’, is specifically catered towards the younger generation. The game is designed to have all the ‘fun’ of a virtual game but the focus is on development of skills and learning. Our team of artists have created an island that the game is set on and the game is multiplayer which encourages group work (this will end up building the base skill of teamwork when it comes to employability).
Our games are interactive and encourage the player to make active choices just like in the real world. We want to change the way people think about games. It is one of the biggest industries in the world and there is massive potential especially since we are well and truly in the ‘digital age’ and have been for a while. Totem Learning design bespoke games for all industries and we’re continuously looking for the next challenge. A study at Oxford University suggested that children who play around 1 hour of video games a day end up being more sociable, happier and calm. However, kids often play a lot longer than 1 hour but perhaps if this time is being spent largely learning rather than fighting villains or racing cars, we may be on to a winner. I think the best thing we can encourage is for kids to play video games but to also go outside and learn about the real world. For one, it will improve the action they take in the game as well as keeping them healthy and engaged in the real world as well as the virtual ones.