Survey reveals positive side of casual games

Written by Joe Martin

August 29, 2007 // 9:59 a.m.

Tags: #cameron #casual #educational #games #jt #law #legal #popcap #survey #thompson #tory #wii

Is a man not entitled to the joy of his games? No, says the man in the UK, it makes you a yob. No, says the man in the US, it makes you a serial killer. No, says the man from the Austria, it makes you a killer robot from the future.

So, I chose something different - I chose to write this Bioshock-influenced news story about a recently completed survey into the educational value of casual games. It's not as impressive as an underwater city, but it'll do for now.

PopCap Games has just unveiled the results of the largest-ever worldwide survey into the casual games market, revealing that a whopping 70 per cent of 'family gamers' believe casual games provide educational benefits for their children and grandchildren.

"In stark contrast to traditional perceptions of computer gaming, parents/grandparents said casual games helped them bond with their children/grandchildren (92 per cent)" Said the company in a press release yesterday.

The survey revealed that a massive 68 per cent of participants thought that casual games gave improved dexterity and hand-eye coordination while a further 60 per cent cited a benefit to learning skills such as pattern recognition. Oddly though, less than half (44 per cent) of respondents found the game came relaxation benefits - then again, Bespelled is pretty stressful at high levels and there's only the one member of bit-tech staff who has completed it.

66 per cent of participants would welcome the use of casual games in schools - but would you? Do computer games have a place in education, or should we focus on drilling knowledge into children in a military fashion? Let us know what you think in the forums.

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