Older people who haven’t grown up with video games are often quite biased against them. They allege that these games instill violence among children and distract them from more productive pursuits.
However, these allegations have been largely debunked and attributed to a mixture of factors, combined with the overuse of these games. In moderation, video games are a great way to develop reasoning and learn to communicate effectively.
You’ve also probably seen the rise of esports on your Cox customer service connection, and how they have become a major industry.
There’s no denying that video games are now an important part of arts and culture in the world. They are widely respected as an artistic medium, with various gaming genres out there.
In addition, the industry is actively working towards diversity, and numerous developers, especially indie ones, address social issues head-on.
These include mental health problems, relationship issues, cancer, surveillance, and many others. Here are a few socially conscious games you must check out.
1. It Takes Two
This is a quirky take on divorce, and also promotes collaboration. It deals with the way a child copes with her parents’ devolving relationship.
The gameplay involves close-knit collaboration and clear communication, as you can only play as a pair, and need to work together to solve numerous puzzles and progress through the various levels.
This game received immense critical acclaim and was also praised for its art style and mechanics. It is quite complex at times and really makes you think about how you need to put effort into your relationships, whether romantic or otherwise.
2. That Dragon, Cancer
This game deals with the tragic true story of the game developer’s young child going through cancer. It personifies the disease as an unbeatable dragon and does not really let you control how things will end.
However, it shows the ups and downs of parenting the child, and how there are happy moments in between as well.
This is a truly heartbreaking game but showcases the reality of many parents whose children suffer from the ravages of this disease.
Mental health is a major social issue that affects people all over the world. Gris is basically the story of a young girl going through depression. This game features some of the most gorgeous designs you’ll see.
Each color represents a different emotion, and even the protagonist’s movement is affected by what emotional turmoil she’s going through.
Rife with symbolism, and full of beautiful landscapes, this is a great game to pass your time and relax. If you tend to have these mental health issues as well, you’ll feel understood and represented when you play this game.
4. Sayonara Wild Hearts
Everyone’s been through various breakups in their lives. Sayonara Wild Hearts is a great take on a young woman’s love life, and how she progressed through various relationships.
Each stage represents a different breakup and how she dealt with it. Near the end, you get to face all these relationships in one stage and make your peace with them.
The best part about this game is its rhythmic gameplay. It features a number of different mechanics, and each level is distinct from the other, with beautiful soundtracks to match.
Sayonara Wild Hearts is also an excellent example of LGBTQ representation, with no tokenization or pandering involved.
5. Watch Dogs
Over the past few years, the fear of surveillance has been quite high. State-sanctioned technology is steadily being implemented to track and police-citizen behavior all over the world.
Watch Dogs deals with this concept by showcasing a dystopian world, which seems eerily plausible in this day and age. This game requires a lot of thought, as you need to get into various systems with hacking mechanics to achieve your goals.
This game is one of the few titles in this list that achieved nearly cult status and has been a popular franchise for a large audience.
6. Life is Strange
As you’ve probably seen on popular media throughout your lives, being a teenager is not easy. Add a few things like loss, unexpected abilities, teetering friendships, and sexual harassment to this mix, and you have Life is Strange.
This unique game changed how gamers thought of gameplay and has a rich story with lots of important social elements involved, including environmentalism.
This game was actually quite successful and spawned a number of sequels and spin-offs. It is quite widely available, and is well worth buying, especially with its exploration of friendship.
To sum up, numerous video games tackle important social issues around you. You just need to find the right games and increase your awareness and knowledge about these issues.