Mental Mishaps

Errors in perceiving, remembering, and thinking.

Video Games Invade the Real World

Turning off the videogame may not end the game. People continue thinking about the game and may experience the game in the real world. Gamers will respond to real world stimuli as if they were the game stimuli. The videogame has invaded their minds. Read More

Certain games have actually

Certain games have actually made me more patient with people. Bioware is a game company that specializes in story heavy role playing games. You can choose how to develop your character through choices and dialogues. A lot of it involves helping your companions through personal issues or settling conflicts between races or nations. I typically choose to play the good guy role which means listening to both sides and trying to find a middle ground where everyone can come out satisfied. I came to admire my character for her patience and found myself wanting to be more like her.

On the other hand, the bad guy role is a hoot. He always takes the quickest way through everything which usually means bloodshed and destruction. Both good guy and bad guy can come out the hero in the end but the bad guy role typically has more downsides such as companions hating you, leaving your team, and generally creating more problems in the long run.

Anyway, depending on the game we can take away a lot of good things from them.

I recently started leveling a

I recently started leveling a Dwarven warrior in World of Warcraft. I typically do not drink a stout beer, but tonight when I went out to eat, I ordered up a stout just like my Dwarven brothers would. Despite typically disliking stout beer, I actually enjoyed it tonight. I've been very uptight lately, job issues, family issues, and just overall anxious. I look to the Dwarves in World of Wacraft and I just think why can't we all be like them? I'm jealous of them, they are into their work, they do it intensely and they have strong focus, the culture doesn't expect them to be overly social and under a microscope like our current real world culture does, they're hard workers, they're impenetrable, good spirited, strong, and they have a deep culture of just caring about each other as well. When I'm out and about anyway, I think of the Dwarves and I try to model them, (without the acccent of course), but I just try to move through life with the same peacefulness and ease that the dwarves seem to.

Sounds and alerts becoming intrusive

I feel that I am not a normal "gamer" (which most probably don't admit either) though I will binge play a game for a week or so and than not play any other video games for 4-6 months. One thing that I found came out of the seminar discussions was the importance of sounds and alerts one might encounter while playing. The example of a chess being opened in Zelda "Ocarina of Time" has such a distinct noise that I would recognize it anywhere, and even sounds that are similar like the chattering of wind chimes will make me think of gaining a dungeon map or a quiver of arrows. Also the beeping that some games will make when you are in danger or low in health is very similar to the sound of a crosswalk warning that it is no longer safe to walk (Beep Beep Beep!) and I often catch myself thinking of it when Im scurrying across the intersection.
These are my experiences of involuntary or even intrusive thoughts that link video game playing to my actual physical life. I wonder if and how much this experience will increase with the implementation of virtual reality gaming, where you will much more involved in the process.


After binge-watching Chuck on Netflix I thought there was a bomb in my car for second. It was just the flashing light from my car alarm.
I think it's more of an hours spent thing, rather than any other reason.

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Ira E. Hyman, Jr., Ph.D., is a Professor of Psychology at Western Washington University.


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