Playing online games can be a great way to have fun and improve your overall well-being. A recent study from the Oxford Internet Institute (OII) found that people who play with friends for long periods of time reported feeling happier than those who don't. The main purpose of playing is to have fun, but it can also provide a sense of accomplishment when you achieve certain objectives or goals. This feeling is further enhanced when you receive trophies or badges for your accomplishments.
When playing a game, it's important to avoid getting too caught up in the quest for control. Setting collection goals can be a great way to give yourself something to work towards and feel satisfied when you complete them. According to Przybylski, this could be attributed to the social aspects of gaming, which allow players to interact with each other through their characters. This doesn't mean that solo play is directly linked to anxiety.
If multiplayer games are causing you stress, playing them can actually have the opposite effect. Some people may feel pressure to complete tasks, while others may worry about how their peers will perceive them. This finding is in contrast with most research findings from the past four decades, which suggested that playing more video games could make people more unhappy. Playing video games actually engages almost every part of your brain, helping you develop higher-level thinking skills.
Watching videos from Let's Play and Twitch can also be beneficial as they can help you learn about the risks of a game before you play it, so you can have a successful session. Gaming anxiety is a real issue that affects people all over the world and can manifest as physical symptoms such as headaches, palpitations, abdominal pain and paresthesia (a feeling of pins and needles). It can also lead to feelings of hopelessness and low self-esteem. To combat this, it's important to focus on the rewards that come from playing video games, such as the release of dopamine - a neurotransmitter associated with a sense of accomplishment.
If you're trying to compete with other players, it's natural to feel tense when you lose. There are many things that can cause anxiety, including the feeling of “unwillingness to play a different game until part of it is resolved” according to Yonatan Sobin, The Nerd Therapeuta. Przybylski noted how people play online games with their friends in order to “meet their basic psychological needs” when they are mostly encouraged to stay away from people in person. Whether you're playing alone or as part of a team, sharing those experiences with others can help create a more friendly atmosphere. Starting conversations with your teammates or opponents can help make gaming more enjoyable for everyone involved.