There are a lot of stereotypes surrounding gamers and video game culture. Some of them have some merit, while others are probably a little far fetched. Gamers can be referred to as lazy, “nerdy,” or even obsessed with the video games they play on a regular basis.
But, could video games really contribute to the downfall of a marriage? What is it about seemingly harmless video games that could ruin a relationship? Let’s take a closer look.
Who Is at a Greater Risk for Divorce?
It’s hard to pinpoint why certain groups of people seem to get divorced more than others. One study by the U.S. Census Bureau suggests that money often has a lot to do with it. Couples with higher-paying professions tend to stay together. People with lower-paying jobs or those who are unemployed are at a greater risk of splitting up. This is reflective of the toll that financial strain can have on a marriage.
While it’s not necessarily fair to associate gamers with people who don’t have high-paying jobs, a spouse might see someone who plays games all the time as “lazy” or not willing to go out and get a better job, which can boost that risk factor. Gaming can also be an expensive hobby, no matter the gaming system of choice.
Money isn’t the only problem, though. Gamers face a couple more complex issues when it comes to their beloved hobby and their relationships.
Video games often take a lot of time and attention, and video game addiction is one of the most common addictive behaviors. Getting addicted to gaming is easy, and that can cause the person involved to isolate themselves and feel anxious when they’re not playing. For a married gamer who could be spending more time on their spouse or might not be enjoying that quality time as much as they could, that can create a lot of turmoil. A study from Brigham Young University found that most spouses who are married to gamers wish they would put as much effort and energy into their marriages.
Video games can also cause other problems, including physical ailments and conditions. The hobby is often criticized for contributing to the 36% of obese adults in the country. Because video games are especially popular with kids and young adults, they are similarly seen as a contributing factor towards the 12.5 million children considered obese in the U.S. When someone is glued to a screen for hours at a time, especially if they’re addicted, they likely aren’t getting the exercise and physical activity they need. An addiction to video games absolutely puts you at a higher risk of divorce if you’re ignoring your marriage and not taking care of your physical and emotional health the way you should.
Are There Any Positives to Playing Video Games?
There are plenty of “pros” to being a gamer — if you do it the right way. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean talking to your friends on Fortnite until two in the morning every night. If you love the world of gaming and don’t want to give it up, find different ways to make it more productive for you and your marriage.
When it comes to “getting physical,” not all video games require sitting on the couch with a bowl of your favorite salty snack. Some games, like Just Dance or Kinect Sports, are designed to get you up and moving while you game. It’s a great way to stay active, especially if you find other physical activities time-consuming and un-motivational. Video games can do more than get your body in shape, too. Educational video games are being used to help students with visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learning styles. They’re designed to boost critical thinking and problem-solving skills, while helping kids to learn more about how to make decisions. They even help kids learn what it’s like to lose.
Finally, the video game industry is actually doing some good for the world at large. Most recently, a game called “Change: A Homeless Survival Experience” has taken on the popular genre of role-playing games to show what it’s like to be living on the streets. This gives gamers a real window into the harshness of homelessness. Other gaming companies have given back to charities that help the homeless population. The industry itself is so much more than the image of a lazy teenager on his parents’ couch, playing games for hours on end. It’s important to start realizing that, so the stigma many people have about gamers begins to change.
How to Lower Your Risk of Divorce As a Gamer
If you’re an avid gamer, you don’t have to give up your passion to keep your marriage alive. There are a just few things to keep in mind to balance your relationship with your gaming habit. Do you spend more time gaming than you do with your spouse? Does it change the way you actually treat your spouse? If so, it’s time to make a change.
The changes you make don’t have to be extreme or overwhelming. Set a timer for yourself when you start to play, and stop playing when it goes off. Maybe use that extra time afterward to go on a date with your spouse. You can also invite your spouse to play along with you. Even if they’re not a gamer, chances are they’ll appreciate the fact that you want to let them in on that important part of your life.
However, the most important thing you can do is to make sure you’re living in the real world, and not a virtual one. If you’re not spending as much time and effort on your marriage as you do on your games, you could be putting your relationship at risk.
Conan entered pop culture long ago when a young Arnold Schwarzenegger (Predator, True Lies, and Twins) took on James Earl Jones’ (Star Wars, Dr. Strangelove, and The Lion King) Thulsa Doom in 1982s cult classic Conan The Barbarian. The film was only the first adaptation of the classic pulp fiction magazines and comics that have been entertaining people since the 1930s. The character has been brought to video game consoles in the past and will soon return in the upcoming game, Conan Exiles, currently available in Early Access on Steam. Like most games these days involving the player taking on a single character, the player has the option to adjust the appearance to suit their own looks or desires. It turns out, Conan Exiles allows for more adjustments than the average game. The following article contains some imagery that is NSFW. You have been warned.
Videogame tie-in novels get a bad rap. Sure, they’re often cynical cash-ins that get farted out by games studios periodically to milk cash from innocent, story-hungry gamers, but they aren’t all terrible. In fact, in recent years big names in the Science fiction and fantasy community have come forward, recognising the creative opportunities of playing in other people’s imagined worlds and shedding light on the stories that lurk in the background of their favourite game series. Mass Effect, the sprawling RPG with limitless potential for storytelling, just signed up a new author to pen their latest novel, and they may have just won the jackpot.
When Yooka-Laylee was announced on Kickstarter, it was a big deal. The game was being developed by Playtonic Games, a new game studio comprised entirely of former members of Rare, many of which had worked on game series such as Battletoads, Donkey Kong Country, Banjo-Kazooie, Conker, Perfect Dark, and the timeless N64 classic Goldeneye. Their mission was to create a new game to reinvigorate the dying genre of 3D platformers, a genre set into motion by Super Mario 64 that once dominated the video game market. These developers, led by project director Chris Sutherland, wanted to bring the style of gameplay they had (arguably) perfected in games like Banjo-Kazooie. There was only one problem: Banjo and pals are owned by Microsoft. Enter his unofficial successor: Yooka the Chameleon, and his pal, Laylee the Bat. With new characters, the boys (formerly of Rare) were back in business, so they turned to Kickstarter to fund the dream. They asked for $270,000 to make it happen; well, it did. In less than 30 minutes. (more…)
From the time she saved Andrea’s bacon in the finale of season 2 of The Walking Dead, Michonne’s past has been given to us in bits and pieces along the way. Portrayed on-screen by Danai Gurai, viewers have watched the character prove her worth over and over, from her care of the children to her skill as a badass katana-wielding walker-slayer, yet there are still huge gaps in her history. Telltale Games, known for titles such as Tales from the Borderlands and Minecraft Story Mode, announced that they will look to fill some of that missing canon in an upcoming mini-series game devoted specifically to Michonne. (more…)
Disney has long been at the forefront of pushing boundaries when it comes to kids and their interaction with imaginative toys and experiences. The Disney Infinity toy/game hybrid series has been doing extremely well these last few years, and of course, Disney’s theme parks themselves are essentially one big immersive experience. Now, the company is ready to make another leap: Playmation, wearable smart technology that they hope will blur the lines of gaming and imaginative play all the more.
As a fan of documentaries, I am very much looking forward to this one. As I’m sure you all heard by now, director Zak Penn and the film crew for Atari: Game Over, proved earlier this year that the urban legend was right, and that all the unpurchased cartridges were buried in a New Mexico landfill. But of course, that’s just part of the story. Later this year, fans and curiosity seekers will relive the journey of the nascent days of video gaming, where the sky was the limit, programmers were rock stars, and a video game based on the most popular movie of all time nearly killed a billion dollar business while it was still in its crib. (more…)
A lot of people aren’t fans of the look of Michael Bay‘s Transformers, and they have longed for something more akin to the Autobots and Decepticons of old (school). Well, this game’s for you. A trailer’s been released for the multi-platform game Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark, and from the looks of it, it will answer once and for all who the best robots in disguise are: the 80s Transformers or the Bay-formers. Also it’s a tie-in to the upcoming Transformers: Age of Extinction or something. (more…)
Looks like we’ll never ever get a chance to put our thumbs to the world of Star Wars 1313, a stunner of a game that was previewed at last year’s E3. Yes, that title and any others that were in development over at LucasArts have been sucked up into the gears of the big machine, devoured by Disney along with 150 jobs that were lost today when mouse-eared money men decided to pull the plug on the notable design studio.
According to Kotaku, this is no surprise, but — and this is not to dismiss the very real toll levied up the 150 workers who will be without a means of support — it’s still a bit of a hit to a world that craves playable Star Wars, especially in these moments where the universe is expanding with new titles and other notable products.
Will gamers be left behind as Disney tries to take over the world? Possibly, unless the keepers of Walt Disney’s frozen head decide to farm out the work like LucasArts did with the Battlefront games.
Those games are — in my mind — the best out of all the Star Wars games (though, in fairness, I never played Knights of the Old Republic), and yet we know the sad and tumultuous end that that franchise met. Both the Battlefront-esque FPS Star Wars: First Assaultand Star Wars 1313 were to be the next shining jewels in the uneven legacy of LucasArts, especially 1313, a possibly Mature rated game that would have followed a bounty hunter into the seamy underworld of Coruscant.
That concept shared some of it’s roots with the long-discussed live-action Star Wars series that still hasn’t come to be, but the story could be cannibalized and re-used in the upcoming run of Star Wars films or, perhaps, as a tie in game that is connected to one of those projects. Really, no good idea goes u un-molested and pushed to it’s break by either Lucas or Disney, so if 1313 came from as good a place as it seemed, we are sure to see some kind of take on the story eventually, even if it’s all dressed up in Frankenstein-ian scars.
An epic rematch more than 45 years in the making, actor and original Captain Kirk William Shatner comes face-to-face again with The Gorn as they play the new Star Trek video game in this viral video from Namco Bandai.
In the spot, The Gorn (taking a break from haunting Sheldon’s dreams) takes on against Shatner as they play the game. One misunderstanding leads to a fight and… Well, you can see the results for yourself. The video pays tribute to the classic original series episode “Arena,” which featured the first appearance of The Gorn and his often discussed and parodied showdown with Captain Kirk. The Gorn reappears in the new Trek video game as an enemy. In the game, they attack the new Vulcan colony and Kirk and Spock have to stop them.
“What better way to spotlight the adventure and fun everyone can have actually playing as Capt. Kirk in the new game, than to team up the legendary former captain himself to play one of his old foes,” said LeeAnne Stables, President of Consumer Products at Paramount Pictures, in a press release. “Mr. Shatner is such a great sport and that Gorn had absolutely no chance of coming out on top this time.”
“It never ceases to amaze me how many people still ask me about that scene,” added Shatner. “It’s 46 years later, and he hasn’t aged as well as I have.”
The Star Trek video is available for pre-order now and will released on April 23, 2013 on X-Box 360, Playstation 3 and PC. The promotional video is below along with the original Kirk/Gorn face-off from 1967.