People are using gaming to combat the stress of quarantine

As an essential worker, I feel a lot of questions during this time have been “how are you coping at work?” though our home lives within quarantine may be just as questionable. However, for gamers in quarantine, not a lot has not changed. For a lot of the gaming world, spending a lot of time inside is not a new occurrence. Gamers have been around for decades, so mindlessly spending time in front of a TV on their console of choice has always been a way to pass the time.

For casual gamers, a lot of time these last few weeks has been spent playing “Animal Crossing”, a popular game by a publisher known as Nintendo. Time here is spent terraforming and decorating their own island, whilst animals make up the populace of their invented landscapes. Gamers were quick to use this as a form of escapism; in “Animal Crossing” there is no pandemic, so it is easy to go about day to day lives there and forget the harsh realities of the outside world.

Furthering this trend of using gaming as a form of escapism—a lot of publishing houses such as Sony and Microsoft, along with Nintendo, have offered deals or free games during this time. I find it is sort of a way to unify the community, as for the first time in seemingly forever, we all are going through the same issues as a collective whole. Releasing these games for free or at a discounted price has allowed players to link up online and engage in communication, that they otherwise may be going without right now.

Gaming as a whole may be a questionable subject, but those looking for ways to cope may learn a thing or two from those who engage in it. Whether you are casual or hardcore, there may be a game for you to ease the stress of this pandemic, and with everyone on a smart phone nowadays, it is easier than ever to engage.