Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Future: Life Skills Through Video Games

Artist, film maker and game designer Michael Highland discusses the significant impact video games have in programming the brain in his film As Real as Your Life:

The beauty and reality of video games today lies not in the lifelike graphics, the vibrating joysticks or the virtual surround sound, it lies in that these games are beginning to make me emotional.  What is sadder is that my inability to understand and decipher the real world I live in makes these simple, virtual emotions even sweeter.  The people that make these games are smart, They know what makes me tick.  What makes me scared, excited, panicked, proud and sad.  They use these emotions to train me to survive in the worlds they create.

As Real as Your Life (Original Cut) from Michael Highland on Vimeo.

Michael Highland discusses the way virtual violence is increasingly mimicking that of the real world, with real violence often reflecting methods used within video games.  Highland believes the increasing amount of time spent in the virtual world allows gamers to form emotional bonds with virtual characters.  The use of repetition and real-life situations in gaming creates survival instincts within the brain.  Once purely virtual, these survival instincts begin to arise in real-life situations, making video games a most effective tool for propaganda and ‘brain reprogramming’.  Highland believes that video games’ significant influence over people’s brain functions can be used to educate people for the better, but warns: “Be careful what you play, and what your game might be wiring into you.”

Source TrendONE, PSFK, As Real as Your Life (Original Cut) from Michael Highland on Vimeo.

Michael Highland - As Real As Your Life / games and experience

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