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What Games Can Teach Us

As a kid, I struggled like all of us do, to figure out how to be as smart as the “grown ups” in my life. Mathematics, spelling, problem solving and critical thinking are all developed over time, at different rates. What I learned from a very young age, is that video games have always been there to pickup the slack and let me practice drills in order to slam information into my brain.

I am one of the fastest typists in my social network. Not that I’m bragging, but it has always been a strong suit and a great aid in writing last minute college papers. For this article, I took a quick typing test to see exactly where I landed, and after making two mistakes, my adjusted words per minute (they base the scale on how many words you can type per minute) is 109, putting me in the pro category. The only reason I got that fast, is because in 7th grade, I had a typing class that featured a game called Mario Teaches Typing.

mario-teaches-typing.jpg

I had used a keyboard before, but had never learned what “home row keys” were or proper technique. But with Mario on my screen, the faster and more accurately I typed, the further in the game I would progress. I would do drill after drill after drill until I had mastered it. So much that my teacher, at the end of that school year, gave me a sucker and a little sticky note that read, “To the fastest typist in 7th grade. Ever.”

As a younger kid, Sesame Street ABC, 123 served as a great aid to my counting and spelling, but recently, I’ve learned to apply that to my adult life as well. Growing up, I was never that big into conventional sports. I surfed, got into skateboarding and snowboarding, and can tell you way too much about the X-Games. But when it comes to Football, Basketball and other conventional sports, I just never spent any time in that world or cared to learn anything about it.

Sure watching the Superbowl is a blast, and with my current internship, I have been spending a lot of time covering the NBA Finals between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors. I realized that I don’t know a lot about Basketball, but remembered a few years ago using MLB The Show 14 to teach me quite a bit about the game of Baseball. The coolest thing is, every PlayStation Plus member is able to get NBA 2k16, absolutely free.

2k16

 I’ve been in this nerd game for close to 30 years now. As such, I’ve read countless stories telling the world how video games are making us lazy, violent, disconnected drones that are so detached from normal civilized people that we fail to take showers or wash our hands. Now, we’ve all had a solid gaming marathon at some point in our lives. But the point of this article is to point out that we aren’t just that mindless horde with sticky fingers and Cheetos dust on our pants.

We’re also the group of people with access to virtually any genre on the marketplace. Sports, racing, finance, strategy, creativity, problem solving and more are at our finger tips if we ever needed to brush up on something. Which in my opinion, is a very good thing.

Have you learned anything from a video game? Did you take that test to see how fast of a typist you are? Let me know!


Devon McCarty is forever grateful of the things he learned with a controller in hand. You can see more o fDevon on his Watch. Chat. Play! Facebook page, chat to Devon @DesignatedDevon, but don’t for one second think I don’t want you to drop some sweet love in the comment section below. And note that Analog Addiction doesn’t always reflect the views/humor of the Watch. Chat. Play! staff. No matter how funny they think they are.

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