For almost all my life, I have been a reader. Reading and playing video games have always been something that interests me. For the last couple of years, I combined those 2 passions into one and read a lot of books talking about video games. I didn’t want novels or stories complementing game. I wanted behind-the-scenes stories. I am eager to hear about game development stories, good and bad. I wanted some perspective on the video game industry and hear about the tribulations of this crazy evolution. I loved what I read. I even participated last year in a podcast (from my good friends of The Girls On Games) talking about some of them. I continued to read, and those same friends recommended me this book, called Lost in a Good Game: Why we play video games and what they can do to us. When I heard that it would be an analysis of our relationship with them, bringing out scientific research on many subjects and presenting them, I was sold. I think it is a great read for anyone who is interested in the facts behind the games.
A little bit about the author
The writer is Dr. Pete Etchells, and he is a psychologist and science writer. His academic background, combined with his experience as a science blog network coordinator, gave him the tools to write a book that can be read by anyone who has interests in this domain, without having a deep scientific background.
Understanding the appeal
Videogames are now omnipresent in our everyday life. A big portion of the population play, from either a mobile device, a portable game console, a home console or a computer. Those who are not really into this look at this phenomenon scrutinize and want to understand what makes gamers tick. With the level of immersion in our daily routine, questions are asked about their effects. Especially during the last couple of years, scientific researchers have tried to analyze what is going on, and their results have been…very controversial. There has been as much positivity as negativity around every aspect, going from the amount of screen time, to addiction, to escapism, to the influence of their violent content. Despite all of this back-and-forth, videogames are as popular as ever.
The book digs deep to explain why there have been so many contradictions in their analyses. For each aspect that is talked about, the author documents and explains actual scientific researches from both sides of the argument (positive or negative), and puts a light on why it is the case. The representation is really on point, and leaves the readers with the facts, asking them to make their own opinion about the subject, which is great. It never becomes too indulgent or preachy.
Multiple formats to please everyone
This book has been available to purchase since June 21st of this year. It can be purchased on Amazon (Canada, US, and maybe in other countries), and you can opt for a print copy, audiobook, Kindle or MP3 CDs.