Re: DSM: Video games

From: Allan Saugstad (
Date: Thu May 10 2001 - 00:50:39 EDT

Just wanted to throw my two cents worth in on video games, if I'm not
too late.

I used to be a bonafide expert at a whole whack of games. I spent many
hours in my youth mastering a wide range of arcade and computer games.
I see video games as being little microcosms of real life (at their

The following statements I think are true for both video games AND life
in general :

- I am motivated to play and learn as long as I am either having fun in
the moment or am working to achieve a goal

- I am motivated to play and learn as long as there are challenges to

- I am motivated to play and learn as long as I can see that, through
hard work and determination, my skills and knowledge are growing and I
am getting closer to achieving my goals

As soon as I "finish" the game, it completely loses it's appeal. If the
game is too hard, and I can't improve or move ahead, I become frustrated
and move onto other games. However, I need patience, determination, and
even courage, in order to keep going and to keep trying to achieve each
little goal along the way.

Life lessons, all of these, I think.

On the downside though, video games are also a way to escape from real
life. Even now, in my mid-30's , I find myself turning on a video race
car game or golf game for a little entertainment. I tune out the world
and focus on the fun of the game. After a long while of total
absorption, I finally finish and I really feel spent - and not at all
relaxed or rejuvenated - kind of like I feel after reading the newspaper
for too long or TV. It's not healthy for me.

Allan Saugstad


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