A Reminder That Video Games Are A Force For Good

nintendo games breath of the wild depression sadness mental illnessImage: Kotaku

Spurred on by the recent discussions of video games and violence, and spurred on by the emotional and often downbeat tone of that discussion, a user on Twitter posted a simple thought exercise. Rather than talking about the misery and pain of the week, what if people shared all the times Nintendo games changed lives instead?

Unsurprisingly, the tweet went viral with over 22,000 retweets and 31,200 likes, prompting a trending discussion where people began sharing tales of how Nintendo games have served as a force for good.

Users began retelling stories of the first times they shared a Nintendo game with their parents. Others spoke about times how Nintendo games helped them while they were being bullied at school, difficult situations at home, or just being able to connect with people over a shared interest.

It's not the first time we've heard, or covered, about games helping people through difficult times. The escapism of video games has a large part to do with that, but the illustration of other characters, environments and stories can often be a trigger to help us in our day to day life too.

How Breath Of The Wild Helped Me Through Depression

I am standing at the foot of an enormous mountain, barely clad. Rain lashes me, and in the distance there is lightning and thunder. I am shivering, but I know – at least I think I know – that atop this mountain shelter awaits. The promise of a warming meal and a warmer bed. Perhaps companionship. But first, this mountain. One step at a time. One aching, tired, lonely step at a time.

Read more

I Was Homeless And Video Games Saved My Life

It’s getting dark. The few people left on the street are either actively ignoring you, or warily staring at you, half expecting you to jump up and mug them. You’re hungry, you’re tired, your legs are numb from sitting on the concrete. The six dollars in your pocket will get you something from McDonalds, but you were hoping to save it until you could find a few extra dollars for a hostel for the night. You sigh, and look down at your DS - battery low. Only a few more hours and then you’ll have to face reality again.

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How have video games helped you through difficult times?


Comments

    I had just finished TAFE and I was struggling with unemployment when I bought a used Dreamcast in 2001. Games like Metropolis Street Racer, Skies of Arcadia and SoulCalibur got me through some tough times.

    The big one though was Shenmue. I bought it around the time 9/11 happened and for whatever reason it was my solace during those dark times. To this day, playing Shenmue can brighten my mood in a way no other game can.

    Why Nintendo specifically? Video games in general have a lot of positivity to share.

    Bit rich from Kotaku who's regularly throwing gaming/gamers under the bus.

    Sekiro's blend of intensity and near-save retrial systems majorly got me through a time in my life that was anxiety-ridden. No other game came close to providing me that release.

    Nintendo? Never even had one. Xbox and PC are what brought positive changes to my life, starting from opening that original Xbox and firing up Halo CE for the first time.

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