Games… they aren’t just for kids you know. Cyber-cafe and LAN gaming centres thrive on this premise. Modern games aren’t just time wasters. They educate too. Okay before you parents turn up your nose and frown upon this statement, consider the following:
Modern games, in order to engage the player in the game fully, try to be “immersive”. As such, games do a lot of research into the subject material in question. Hence, even if the game is fiction by nature, it will still be based upon facts. An example – The Journeyman Project. This game is about a time-traveller (fiction) that must travel around the timeline to fix problems to save the world. The time periods are painstakingly researched (facts). As such, even if the kid (or adult!) playing this game has no interest in history, after going through this game he would have come out of it learning a little bit about history.
Modern games embed real-life physics. The most prevalent games using this technology are those First Person Shooters (eg, Half-Life and their mods, Deux Ex etc) and Flight Simulators. The Flight Sim category is even more detailed in the sense that not only do they model the world outside the cockpit, but the plane they are simulating is researched thoroughly to bring the player as close to “the real thing” as possible. Modern combat flight sims are so “realistic” that it has been commented by real pilots that the only thing missing is the G-Forces during flight. Everything else (unclassified materials, that is) is so close to the real thing. As an example, when Longbow 2 was released in 1996, Gulf War veterans who flew the Apache AH-64A into battle had *flashbacks* of the war when they tried this flight sim! The night fighting they saw through the cockpit of the game is almost as eriee as when they were in Iraq.
At the very least, people who play games tend to have more co-ordinated hand-eye reflexes and better motor skills. People who play TOO MUCH games will develop problems in the wrist, or may develop vertigo (motion-sickness). As the old adage goes – too much of a good thing is bad for you.
Updated (21 April 2012)
Have discontinued using Xfire. Decided instead to use Raptr instead. Has all the features of Xfire (minus the video-capture function), plus it’s supported way better than Xfire is!
My Current Rig
Intel i5-4690 @ 3.5Ghz (Quad Core)
Intel Z87 chipset
16GB DDR5 RAM
nVidia GTX 770 with 4GB VRAM
Logitec G502 Gaming Mouse
TrackIR head tracker