ENTERTAINMENT: The coronavirus and its effect on gaming

The video game industry has been through quite a bit during these times with the coronavirus. With many people confined to their homes, video game sales have actually been going up and online tournaments have started to rise in popularity. At the same time, companies have not been able to produce as much hardware – gaming consoles, headphones and other equipment – as they could before the pandemic. 

For the video game industry, this is the first time something like this has ever happened. Therefore, game companies have had to make many changes from how they had operated before the pandemic.

YouTube gamer Bradley Burke commented, “Personally since Covid-19 has hit, I’ve actually found myself playing a lot more games than usual, and even going back to some that I haven’t played in a while. I’ve been playing a lot of Skyrim lately because I feel like it satisfies my sense of exploration, since for the most part, I’ve been inside since the virus started spreading. It’s almost as if I’m playing games that specifically satisfy things I’d like to do – vicariously traveling the world of Skyrim when I can’t partake in traveling myself, so to speak.” 

YouTube gamer Conrad Pallman commented, “My favorite quarantine game is easily Animal Crossing: New Horizons. It came out at the perfect time, right as the lockdown and stay-inside orders were picking up. The game is basically a life simulator, so since I can’t go outside and interact with friends in real life, the game lets me live this perfect life on an island with talking animals where nothing goes wrong. The game in theory can be played for hours and hours, since there’s no clear objective apart from living your island life.”

Another YouTube gamer Nahum Luna stated, “I think that when it comes to gaming, my least favorite part of quarantine is the feeling that there’s nothing else to do. Not so much for myself, but for those that like gaming and use it as a way to decompress. They don’t find it fun anymore and gaming should always be a source of fun. As for me, it’s unfortunate to not be able to attend gaming conventions with my friends the way I normally do every year, and even if I could, I wouldn’t be able to go and do some game collecting the way we always do. The actual aspect of playing games, in and of itself, hasn’t really changed for me, though.”

Some people may view video games as suspicious or as a waste of time, but when we are all stuck at home with nothing to do, video games are a great way to eliminate that boredom. These games are not all violent either. There are games like Animal Crossing: New Horizons that are very peaceful.  

Although the gaming industry has had to make some unfortunate changes, like making directs and conventions digital, we can all still play our favorite games with ease. 

a graph comparing all video game industry sales between 2018, 2019, and 2020.