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A HEALTHY GAME MODE

Throughout the history of humanity, there have been a total of nine major arts developed and enjoyed. They are painting, sculpture, architecture, music, literature and poetry, dance, drama, film, and finally games. The first eight arts focus on the production of the artwork itself, and only the ninth art, games, is centered on the participant. For this reason, the sense of substitution and immersion embodied by a game is unmatched by the first eight arts.

In addition, the depth of knowledge and learning players' experience in a game is beyond the reach of any other art form. For example, there are many people who have viewed paintings, read novels, and watched dramas or movies about ancient wars, but they still cannot understand the intricacies of cold weapon warfare. But for a real-time strategy game player, the basic idea is too simple, and it is the essence and fun part of every strategy game. Clearly, the depth of knowledge and experience brought to people by the ninth art is far beyond what is available with the first eight arts.

Additionally, the benefits of playing games are tremendous. Richard Dawkins’s work on genetics is instructive. A major focus is whether people have a sense of freedom, or whether all meaning comes from the guidance of genes. Genes instruct the brain to secrete happiness hormones such as dopamine to guide people to make decisions that are beneficial to genetic continuity. For example, after human beings accept a challenge of appropriate difficulty and confirm their success, the brain will secrete the hormone dopamine to reward the person for continuing to accept and succeed at challenges. In this way, every time a challenge is completed successfully this person will become smarter and more confident, and the probability of their genes being passed on becomes a little bit higher. Therefore, the pleasure of completing a challenge is much greater than the pleasure of food or the praise of a loved one. However, in real life, there are very few situations that can provide short-term challenges to people and provide immediate feedback on success. However, in a game, players can be challenged with appropriate difficulty and at a high frequency, with feedback being immediate. When playing a game, players receive dopamine rewards from genes and become smarter through the challenges. In a sense, this creates a "win-win" situation for all involved.

This system of rewards for learning and success is evident in many popular video games. For example, in the League of Legends, the junior players must be proficient in operating and understanding the game to pass from the novice stage to the intermediate stage. Knowing this, the player’s brainstorming begins immediately. After each round of the game, players must analyze their own team and opponents. The strengths and weaknesses of their own team and the opponents are examined, and a strategic layout that maximizes strengths and avoids weaknesses is formulated. After the game starts, players decide on feasible tactical arrangements that are in line with the strategy and matched to the actual level of the teammates and assumptions about the opponent's countermeasures. Once the tactics are implemented, they also need to compete with opponents in exploiting strengths and weaknesses. There are a host of strategies involved as well, all a battle of logic: showing weakness to deceive opponents and draw them in, bluffing to scare opponents away, occasionally appeasing the mentality of collapsed teammates and so many more. In real life, there is no job or exercise that can achieve such a high level of strategic thinking and brain training.

Even a certain game player who has no achievements other than playing high-quality competitive games is contributing to society. According to the human collective unconscious theory of the founder of psychology, Carl Gustav Jung, the strategies and tactics mastered by such game players will also be uploaded to the human collective subconscious and support the way for later successes. Humans are spiritual and integrated. As long as the player is sure that he is engaged and expressive in the game, then the player's behavior is meaningful to humans.

For as many benefits as they have, video games can also push players into the abyss, waste their time and life, cause them to miss the best years of life, lower their IQ and self-confidence, or ultimately lead them to an inferior life. Luckily, genes reward people not only when a real-world challenge is successfully completed, but also when success occurs in the virtual world. For example, in the game, players receive gear rewards, level rewards, task completion, skill upgrades, unlocking emotional companions, or new characters. People are clever and can devise strategies to cheat a lot of happiness hormones, but the person doesn’t get any true benefit at all. In many games, players will complete highly repetitive tasks in order to gain level promotion or task rewards. As the player has adapted to the way of getting rewards, by relying on repetitive work as opposed to real achievement and learning, this player comes to hate challenges and resists learning complicated things - preferences gradually become juvenile. A game that allows this does not provide players with a process of self-reflection and epiphany. This type of game only values the player's online time. This ultimately produces a person who is played by a game, not a person playing a game.

A good game, on the other hand, should bring a great experience to its player and in return a profit to the game developer. The same characteristics that make playing a game beautiful and beneficial, also make it potentially profitable. Players try various challenges in the game, upgrade their ranks through experience, reflection and epiphany, and spend as much as they can on their favorite characters or costumes; the player puts a lot of energy and time into the role he likes because he understands the true benefit.

Game developers have also obtained capital investment because of players’ willingness to pay for their passion and game experiences, thus providing the financial conditions for the continued creation of the game. A good game must ensure that the time invested by the player is not a waste of life, and it should provide enough room for a player’s preferences and associate financial commitment to evolve. This is a healthy game mode that game developers should embrace.

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