Pokemon Go: Psychological Benefits And Risks

Posted: Jul 25 2016, 7:45am CDT | by , in News | Gaming


Pokemon Go: Psychological Benefits and Risks
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  • The Good and Bad Psychological Effects of playing Pokemon Go

There are good and bad psychological effects of playing Pokemon Go. It seems more like a mixed blessing.

Pokemon Go is the “in” thing right now. The novel augmented reality game comes to you courtesy of Nintendo, the video game company responsible for such gems as Donkey Kong way back in the 80s.

Pokemon Go is a smartphone game that invites players to go on long rambling walks and trips in the Great Outdoors. This game is all about searching for characters hidden in the environment. It supposedly helps those individuals suffering from depressed mood and social anxiety.   

Two University of British Columbia psychology professors have studied the psychological benefits and drawbacks of playing this game. They say that the thrill of collecting items and completing one’s collection is something which is matched by few other schemes in the world.

This strategy shows that the actual value of the items is virtually nil, yet they are so precious for the participants in the game. The nostalgia for the game also plays a part in the overall scheme.

As intermittent reinforcement aids the game player in keeping at the task, he or she is in a state of getting regular doses of adrenalin.  

The suspense and thrill of the chase serve as the attractive force in Pokemon Go. The adults that are playing Pokemon Go today, played similar games by Nintendo when they were just teenagers and kids.

Thus the nostalgia factor is definitely there. Then there is the hard fact that this game reduces symptoms of unhappiness and inactivity. Both are psychiatric issues.

The former is called anhedonia and the latter is called avolition. Getting out in the open air and searching for things in a treasure hunt-like manner is what life is all about. Besides this strategy reconnects us to our hunter gatherer roots. 

The game revolves around a dispersal of regular pellets of rewarding stimuli. This keeps one’s pleasure centers aglow and also leads to an escape from loneliness and isolation.

The game makes one more social and worldly-wise although in an indirect manner. The only problems with this game are that the effects wear off after awhile and one is back in the world of bills, responsibilities and the burdens of maintaining a standard of living.

The game ought not become an outright addiction. Players that are ignorant of traffic rules and physical barriers and obstacles in the environment may be playing with fire. As for the consequences for players who play the game to an excessive extent, they are there alright so caution is the watchword.

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
Sumayah Aamir (Google+) has deep experience in analyzing the latest trends.




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