Why We Play

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What is it about video games that make us so addicted to them?

Video Games: A form of media that used to be exclusive to people labeled as “geeks” or “nerds”. People who were playing pong on their Atari’s in their bedrooms were considered un-cool. Since then, gaming has exploded into the mass media and just about everybody plays games in one form or another. So, why the shift in popularity?

The Graphics

One could argue that the increased production values make you feel more into the game. Meaning you actually have invested feelings for the characters in the game because they actually look realistic, as apposed to a collection of pixels on the screen. Now when I say that I’m referring to mostly pre NES games… like Atari games. You really had to use your imagination when playing back then. With games today, the developer’s imagination comes to life in the form of the game right in front of your eyes. So we become more invested in the characters and stories of modern games…

Escape From Reality

Another reason might be because games let you experience another world, whether it’s realistic, or fantasy, you get to live another life through the game. You get to do things that you could only dream of doing in real life. We also play games because real life isn’t like our dreams… Real life sucks. Video games are a momentary escape from reality. The outside world doesn’t exist for those few hours you spend in the game world. Its just you, and the game, all that other stuff can wait. So we escape into the worlds of video games…


Games also give you a sense of accomplishment. When you do something right, you feel good about it, and usually get rewarded in the game. This applies to EVERYBODY, people like to feel accomplished, and playing and progressing in a game lets you feel that way. There’s no greater reward for a gamer than finishing a good game. [debateable] So we feel accomplished when progressing through a game…


Video games provide us with entertainment. Bottom line, video games are fun. That’s what they’re designed to be. If the game isn’t fun, it was poorly designed, or you need to find what types of games you enjoy. There’s something for everybody, you just need to find it.

This is of course just one gamers opinion on the subject… so I’ll ask you, why do you play video games? What makes you so addicted to them?



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