Why Do People Play Games?
Games have been played for thousands of years. Ancient game boards, dice, and pieces have been found in excavations all across the world. It seems as soon as civilization began, man’s desire for games developed. Many of the first games had sacred or religious connections to them. Today games are played for a wide range of reasons.
First there are many different types of games. This site’s attention is to board, dice, and card games. These games are played because they offer something in return for the players who play them. Ranging from pure fun to fierce competition, the people who play, play for a reason. The following are some of the main reasons.
Games teach a variety of valuable lessons. All games by their very definition will demonstrate and teach the importance of following rules. For children, their first games help instruct them in the significance of taking turns, listening, sharing, understanding winning and losing, and thinking of others; to name but a few. Depending on the type of game will determine some of the more specific knowledge taught.
For Adults, again depending on the type, games can strengthen and teach leadership, strategy, financial planning, different thought processes and life skills. These are only some examples.
Basically a game can represent life, its experiences or particular situations. By playing the game, a player can understand the different strategies or outcomes which happen when making various choices. Players may realize the best choices for certain circumstances. These principals can then be applied to real life itself.
An example of this is with the popular game of Monopoly. Most players of Monopoly know they need to invest in the buying properties in order to receive ‘rent or payments’ when someone lands on a space they ‘own’. Players learn they are most likely not going to win the game by merely going around the board and only ‘saving’ their money. Although Monopoly uses the investing in real estate to win, the underlying principal is investing. There needs to be investment before reward. In real life this can be applied to any type of investing; investing in time, money, people or whatever a person wants to invest in.
Some games are played in order to get to know each other better. Many college, school, or business orientations play a type of game which allows the players to socialize. This often creates a more relaxed atmosphere for new students or workers to begin their first days.
For some people, playing games is a way for them to relieve stress. Good games provide people with interaction; not only with each other but also interaction with the game. When players are active in the game they are not thinking about the other things which may be causing them stress. Playing a game is an escape.
Games can be played for the mental exercise. Some games require active and strategic thinking skills. Chess is a perfect example of playing a game for mental exercise. In order to win the game of chess the player must outperform the other. There isn’t any chance involved.
The children’s game called Memory is another example of a mental exercise game. Playing this game develops the memory, perception, and observation in all its players. Adults who want to keep their memory in shape would benefit from playing a few games with their children.
Whether getting together with family or friends or simply playing a game of solitaire, games are a great way to have fun, relax, and learn.