No matter how we spend our usual day, driving a bus or running a mega corporation, we all yearn to try on the exotic wardrobe of another existence. That was the basis for the timeless classic story: The Prince and the Pauper. It's why we read adventure novels, watch television and go the movies.
So that sounds pretty great on a lot of levels. Who wouldn't love the experience of curling up with a good book by the fire, or flopping down with a tub of hot buttered popcorn to watch a double-feature action picture at the movies? Now you get to kick that up a notch. Got problems at work, with your marriage, no job, or just frustrated with not getting ahead in life as fast as you'd like? Well, how about trying on a newer, cooler hero's life for a few hours a day? A life where you get what you want, when you want it for a change? Right! Where do I sign up? Is there a problem here? Think about it for a minute... why would you want to leave?
Well, back to that first line above where I mentioned we are at a "crossroads in human culture". We can go to the right and curb our appetite for the altered realities of digital entertainment, or we can veer left and fully embrace them. The implications of either path are striking by the way.
Let's consider the right path for just a sec. So you swear off anything that isn't real dirt and atmosphere around you. Okay, you're probably over 50 and you're getting along just fine without the fix of a digital adrenalin rush. Life isn't perfect but it's pretty good. No problem there. Well, except that you're surrounded by a massively growing population of digital natives who wear the electronics of our digital age like Spandex. If you aren't already feeling a little left behind you certainly will be within your lifetime.
"Reports from around the world suggest that gaming addiction is real and on the rise." So is booze, drugs, porn and reality TV. So what? Clearly this is a lesser evil. But it has broader, more subtle influence on our society than any of the aforementioned vices. They are percentage wise far less invasive to everyday life of the average adult. Video game entertainment is different.
Take a look around. Every major facet of modern life is being influenced by electronics and now it's offspring, the video game culture. Most younger adults are wired, texters, iPoders, cell phone twitch-game-players and coffeed up every day. Society is speeding recklessly ahead like a runaway freight train. We talk faster, walk faster, drive faster, change jobs and partners faster. And our patience is growing thinner.