In my two years of dorm living, I’ve noticed a common thread. Hardcore gamers are some of the most isolated people on campus.
Having lived in J. Alvin, the loudest, most boisterous, testosterone-filled dorm on JBU’s campus, I understand that dorm life can be anyone’s nightmare. For someone shy, introverted, quiet, or in need of time alone, retreating to the dorm room with just the console and a headset seems like such a relief. However, too much of this can result in isolation, loss of friendships, and missed opportunities.
Last year, one of my suite mates spent the majority of his time in his room glued to his computer. When he emerged, he looked pasty, pale and sick. His eyes were hollow. He and his roommate didn’t get along, and he had few friends.
To him, video games became his obsession and best friend.
I should clarify and say that video games do have benefits. Like many things, I believe that video games are completely acceptable and valuable in moderation. Video games can be a fantastic means to bring people together as a form of social bonding.
For example, recently my suite mates and I played games together. Afterward, I felt that I gained a new perspective of each of them. We laughed, talked together like never before, and bonded over the common objective of the game. It was quite enjoyable, and we heartily agreed to play together again. Video games, utilized correctly, can be a great social tool and temporary escape from reality.
Having been in college for three years, I would encourage all new students to take advantage of educational, spiritual, and social opportunities in making friends. If not in moderation, video games can attempt to steal those opportunities.