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Cutting Stress With Video Games

Lifestyle & Opinion

By Colin Roberts

College life can be very stressful. Students receive piles of homework that need to be conquered on a regular basis. However, there comes a time when you just have to say “I need a break” and that is when students will turn to stress-relievers.

Some students play sports, go to the beach, or relax around the house. However, many students like to turn to video games for their breaks. Video games are a great choice as they can still stimulate the mind, keeping it quick. In some recent studies it has been said playing video games can improve learning skills. “Younger kids are focusing more on their planning and problem solving while they are actually playing the game”, says Fordham psychologist Fran Blumberg.



One of the most popular games right now is League of Legends. It has spiked in popularity over the years, having an average of thirty-two million players monthly. Sixty percent of its player-base is college students. Brian Clarke, an SPC student, says his favorite game is League. “It’s great at killing time, extremely popular, and a vast majority of my friends play. This lets me connect with friends outside of class, and in down time between matches, we can discuss work.”

MOBA’s, however, are not the only games that students turn to. Cecil, 20, says he really enjoys Ultra Street Fighter Four because “It’s competitive, and I like competition. Just like getting the best grades. Don’t get discouraged if you lose, keep at it. And, when in doubt, mash DP (dragon punch).” Sounds like pretty good advice for several games, as well as when it comes to studying and tests. Just because you get a bad grade, don’t give up!

Courtney Cowper, 17, says she enjoys playing Pokemon in her free time to get away from the dredge of homework. Her favorite from the series is Pokemon Y. The number one thing she took away from the game is that, “You can work with what you have and be happy. The same can be true for tests. You may not get a perfect score, but try harder, study what you know, and you can do better.”

Last but not least, we have Joshua Bedell, 23, who enjoys playing World of Warcraft in his free time. WoW, Josh says, gives him many options to distract him from the stress of school. Researchers like Sean Duncan says World of Warcraft is, “creating an environment in which informal scientific reasoning practices are being learned.” Josh, however, just enjoys the game because it allows him to connect with friends. His best advice to up and coming players of WoW is, “Have fun. Just enjoy the game.”

It seems video games play a huge role in the college community. Which game would you go for to relieve stress?

Photograph by Jason Devaun (Flickr Creative Commons)

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