When it comes to playing games, nothing requires more time investment than MMO games. Some would even consider it a second life. Whether you are just running around, dungeon crawling, or gearing up your character, you can bet your arse that you will play for countless hours—nay, months (or years) before you can be someone in your respective MMO world.
This is probably the reason why some parents are cautious about letting their kids jump into these online fantasy worlds. But is it all nothing but bad? Are you really just wasting your time sitting down in front of your computer, waiting for your next dungeon party? I beg to differ. For me, playing MMO games can actually help players level up in real life. Surprised? No, I’m not making this up. Enclosed is a list of human traits that I believe are enhanced by playing MMO games. Enjoy!
Communication Level Up!
Massively Multiplayer Online games, as the name implies, puts players into a fantasy world where they can freely interact and play with other people. While some users prefer working alone, the best loot can only be acquired through teamwork and utmost communication. Communication (in my opinion) plays a big part, and is probably the backbone of every powerful guild or party in every game.
This is why I believe that MMO players have ample social skills that allow them to interact with people from different walks of life, ranging from kids to competitive veteran players. Language barriers and different moral issues are also present, but that’s not an issue for MMO gamers. I think that if these people work together, they can come up with a unified solution a lot better than non-gamers. Even if you start out as a ‘lone wolf’, the time will come when you will have to speak up and be vocal about your ideas. I’m sure companies or even countries would consider these communication qualities to be RARE and special. The game just really pushes you in many ways, forcing you to improve your interaction skills once pitted with a formidable challenge.
What’s Gonna Work? Teamwork (DUH)
MMO players are no strangers to teamwork. The games in this genre can really test both your patience and ability to work with others. As I have mentioned above, MMO gamers really have to exchange ideas and strategies when pitted against a bothersome foe. This makes even the ‘lone-est’ of players stand up and aid their team mates in times of need, especially in PVP, where you must rely on your team mate’s strengths and carry their weaknesses. Heck, MMO players don’t even have to know who they’re paired with to function well as a group. One simple “Hey! How’re you doing?” and they’re ready to fight. Once channelled into the real world, these people will prove unstoppable.
A Great Destiny For All
MMO games can actually be considered as a tavern for leaders. Aside from having the ability to talk and work with others, the MMO scene is filled with unsung virtual heroes with incredible leadership skills. They can teach newbies without being jerks (well, some of them at least), and even formulate strategies out of his or her teammates’ individual ideas. Despite playing in a fantasy world, these gamers take it quite seriously, and will definitely do their best to take their guild/team to the top.
Since the MMO world is a vast breathing world, a guild’s progress is not to be taken likely. This is why users often encourage their teammates to go forward and do better. You may say that it’s only a game, but when the stakes are higher, you can only imagine how well these individuals will act.
“Come On Guys! We Can Do This!”
If there is one thing that MMO gamers have in common, it’s perseverance. Giving up is probably the last thing on the MMO gamers’ mind when facing a bigger threat. It doesn’t matter how much stronger the dungeon boss or opposing faction is, these players will grind and hone their skills until they are strong enough to defeat the enemy.
Difficulties often spark their competitive spirits. This is partly the reason why MMO games are so time consuming. If you think that it’s easy to get better at the game just by sitting down and playing it, then let me scrap that lie out of your head because it’s not. MMO progression (whether PVP or PVE) requires a lot of time, patience, and devotion. You can hone your skills individually, but group synergy requires tons of practice.
When these players aim for something, it’s more than just sitting down and enjoying. It’s a never-ending cycle of players besting themselves through challenges that forces them to gradually evolve one patch after another. In this world… there is no room for lone wolves.
“Grab the lever when I give the command! If we nail its wings, we can bring this mother down!”
Non-gamers seem to think that we’re still playing pong and Contra with 30 lives, but today’s games require more than just skill and fast fingers. Let me put it this way: no one parties like a gamer in a sort of figurative sense. You get all geared up, make sure the level’s at par, and the people are ready to grind and drink the hell out of the potions when needed. When pitted against a raid boss or an enemy guild that’s too strong to beat, MMO players utilize their ability to think fast and be resourceful.
Although frustrating, playing MMO games can boost a person’s perception skills, reaction time, and creativity. Even if they all have different ideas, these players often find ways to expose their opponents’ weaknesses in a snap. There are many things to consider when doing some serious raids. It entails the leader to know how to coordinate with subleaders and efficiently dole out roles and tips on which monster to kill first, knowing the boss’ weak spot or what item to throw at a specific time, which can all be bothersome since all these require some serious eye-hand coordination. And just like any regular parties, a leader must have be ballsy enough to repriminan (or kick out!) a drunken party member who’s just out to ruin the fun.
There’s also the issue of team synergy in MMOFPSes, where one player has to carry his partner who obviously needs to do some serious shooting practice. Things like positioning troops and spotting sniper nests are also a part of a gamer’s specialty. Mind you, it’s more than just about knowing how to aim and shoot. There are some serious strategies involved, so you will have to be both cunning and fast.
The Ability to Work at a Disadvantage
Lag is an everyday thing for some MMO gamers, which really gives them a form of handicap when facing everyday MMO challenges. While some non-gamers would most likely give up when their opponents hold an unfair advantage (probably calling it “cheap” in the process), MMO gamers will continue to fight on. A gap in skill isn’t enough to stop us from fighting, so what makes them think a little lag will dishearten us? Okay… perhaps I exaggerated a bit.
The point is that a game has to at least be virtually unplayable for some gamers to throw in the towel. It always takes guts to stand against a stronger opponent both in-game and in real life… but we’re ready. And when things don’t go exactly how it planned, it forces the gamers to think on their toes to get the best out of a situation—and they do that without even knowing some people on a personal level.
Great Time Management
Even though they have their own share of responsibilities in the real world, MMO gamers are good at micromanagement, especially when it comes to the games calendar of events. Games belonging in the MMO genre are played by people all over the world, so most players may have problems grouping up as some of them do not share the same time frame.
Scheduling raids, PVP, and running lowbies may be hard to fit in a single day, but it’s not a big problem for the MMO gamer. We can do our everyday tasks and still show up for guild events when scheduled.
It Just Makes Us Better
As you can see, MMO games are not just stuff that we enjoy. Obviously, it has a lot of benefits that we can all apply in the real world. Some may dismiss gamers as people with no sense of reality, but in a way, not everyone can live in two worlds and function extremely well in each one without difficulty. MMOs can also help ‘shut-ins’ express themselves more, allowing them to continuously interact with other people, voicing out what they think is optimal for the situation at hand. It really depends on how you see it, really. You can treat it as a normal game that continuously drains your cash and time, or as a nexus of ways to help improve you as a person.
Working with others, especially the ones you don’t like pose as a big problem for some. We do not expect to like everyone who comes in and out of the game, but that does not mean we cannot groom them to be great players. This alone makes MMO gamers great leaders. We are gradually evolving in many ways, all while doing something we all genuinely enjoy.
You see, we are not missing out on the world. The world is missing out on this enjoyable form of personal, mental, and emotional development.