Impact of Games

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Impact of Games


A game refers to a structure developed for play, typically for entertainment and sometimes for educational purposes. The current modern, mainly online, games provide more benefits beyond entertaining individuals. It helps people view the world from a broader perspective. Different games introduce individuals to different ways of life, societies, and cultures, and as they play those games, they get to know and understand them better. Further, many researchers and authors analyze and discuss the impact of playing different games on both individuals and the world entirely. This case reflects on various reads or articles and videos discussing different games and their impact.

Military-entertainment Complex

For starters, games have profound impacts on the military-entertainment complex. The military-entertainment complex defines the cooperation between the military and entertainment sectors to their mutual benefit, mainly in multimedia, cinema, and virtual reality. Games have been utilized in the United States military since the 1970s  and continue to influence negotiations, decision-making, problem-solving, and collaboration on various strategic missions through the current advanced gaming options. The article Banal War: Full Spectrum Warrior in the Games of Empire: Global Capitalism and Video Games give a thorough analysis and interpretation of the game Full Spectrum Warrior (Dyer-Witherford and de Peuter, 97). According to the article, developers of the game based it on a real training aid for the United States army. It claims that the original version came with a hidden code to access the Army version. Dyer-Witherford and de Peuter (97) postulates that the emergence of the twenty-first-century version of the game illustrates what President Eisenhower warned the Americans about, a military-industry-entertainment complex.

The video posted by Al Jazeera (2012) shows how the military-entertainment complex drives the connection between Hollywood and the US military. This collaboration brings profound benefits to both parties. In essence, game makers acquire data about different kinds of weapons and equipment. The military gets free and positive publicity about the work they do and its importance to a country. The video focuses on the game the Act of Valor, which demonstrates various military operations and the need for cooperation in the military, despite the propaganda about the benefits of games in the military and Pentagon’s operations. Oiligarchy is another modern game available on both Windows and Mac devices. According to Molleindustria (1), the game allows individuals to become protagonists of the petroleum era. In essence, the game involves exploring and drilling around the world for corrupt politicians. It also aims to promote the idea that individuals should stop creating alternative energies and increase the use of oil products. In other words, it supports the idea that individuals should have fun before the depletion of oil resources. Based on this article, the military can use game concepts to create enhanced strategies in their operations. This would also improve the overall outcomes and improve the benefits of the military-entertainment complex.

Building Empathy through Games

Games also help individuals show empathy not only inside the game but also in their real-world actions. The article by Bogost (117) describes the rhetoric experienced in video games. First, it describes the game Animal Crossing, an animal village simulator for the DS and Nintendo GameCube video game consoles. The game portrays the life and issues experienced by most individuals in real life, such as leaving home to look for work, paying mortgages, and the dilemma experienced to maintain their morals as they try to make ends meet. The main character in the game looks for ways to make a living and more money. Nonetheless, nonplayer characters are much less materialistic, which depicts their high morals (Bogost, 118). Many individuals consider games as just playthings for entertainment purposes, but some games are more than that. They portray the social, cultural, and material aspects of the human experience. Individuals who show empathy and other moral concepts in video games are also more likely to implement it in real life.  

The video by McGonigal (2010) also depicts how games can help to create a better world. McGonigal is a game designer for online games. He urges people to spend some time playing better games to get clear insights into how to solve some of the world’s biggest challenges today. According to McGonigal, if the world wants to save some of the most troubling global problems such as hunger, climate change, poverty, conflicts, and obesity, individuals need to play more games as they are crucial to human survival. Playing video games increases an individual’s understanding of strategic planning and enhances their decision-making and problem-solving skills. These skills are critical when making decisions on how to solve the current global problems. Lastly, the article by BBC News gives a thorough description of the game known as Syrian Journey. Syrian issues and conflicts have driven the country into chaos, leaving thousands of individuals dead while millions flee their homes. Many become refugees in neighboring countries, and others pay traffickers to take them to Europe, risking capture, death, and deportation. The game allows individuals to reflect on the difficult choices people make to flee to Europe from Syria and the dilemmas experienced during this journey. With this in mind, individuals can learn how to show empathy to refugees and other migrants experiencing similar issues, especially in the host countries. According to the article, the game is based on extensive research and Syrians’ real experiences who completed the journey. Individuals can learn how to show empathy and help refugees to get basic needs such as clothes, food and housing in the new country and in the camps.


Work cited

Al Jazeera. “Listening Post – Feature: The Pentagon’s grip on Hollywood.” YouTube, 2012,

BBC. “Syrian Journey: Choose Your Own Escape Route.” BBC News, 1 Apr. 2015,

Bogost, Ian. The rhetoric of video games. MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Initiative, 2008.

Dyer-Witheford, N., & De Peuter, G. (2009). Games of empire: Global capitalism and video games. U of Minnesota Press.

McGonigal, Jane. “Transcript of “Gaming Can Make a Better World. ” TED: Ideas Worth Spreading,

Molleindustria. “Oiligarchy.” Molleindustria Games,