After watching the lecture on "Gaming Can Make a Better World" I could not help but think about how her argument had some serious flaws in it. She claimed that gamers have all these skills that non-gamers don't have. Sure she made some good points, that they have an incurable optimism about their game, they have a tightly woven social circle, excellent problem solving, and feel that they are doing something for the good of all, or are they? If feel that she is stretching the bounds of what gamers could do. I point to the gamers in my life. My brother is an avid World of Warcraft player. He capped out on the leveling up a long time ago, and yes he continues to play W.O.W. regardless. He does enjoy what he does, does do a lot of quests, so in that sense he is highly productive. However, he does, or should I say, doesn't ever do his homework. He cannot wrap his head around how his homework is as important to his life as the quest he is trying to complete is. Another example is my best friend's mother, another avid Halo and W.O.W. player. My friend's mother spends so much time playing her games, that my friend had to take up the task of taking care of her house herself. In addition, when my friend does play online games with her mother, her mother introduces my friend as her roommate, not her daughter. She believes that her online friends would not want to "hang out" if they knew she had a teenage daughter. I know that there is the possibility for gamers to band together and solve our global problems, but I'm still a little reserved. The point of a game is that it isn't real, that you can take the risks in W.O.W. that you would not in real life. I guess I am wondering why non-gamers do not have these skills McGonigal praises so highly. Are there not people who have these skills and also can enact them in real life, without the use of a game? What we should be doing is asking ourselves, where are they? So my question is, with the exception of gamers who else has the ability to solve our global problems? Or, how can we tap into the potential of gamers without a game to stimulate them?
Gaming for the World
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