'Generation Gap' is a monthly series where we talk to two Beijingers from two different generations about a random topic. This time we ask Wang, 21 and Lui, 61 their thoughts on China’s video game craze.
A recent report estimated that China will have 354 million online gamers by 2023, more than the entire US population. What are your thoughts on China’s gaming craze?
“My impression is that, for people born after the ’90s, there is not much else to do. Especially young people, who are born in a middle- or upper-class family, it is either that or going out to drink with friends. And that’s why the market for games has been growing so fast lately. It’s mostly the post-2000s generation that is driving it and games are so pervasive among that generation. The impact of gaming on health is definitely something to be considered. I see people my age or younger constantly on their phones, which must have an impact on their social life. And in my generation playing two or three hours a day is a very common sight. Not to mention the amount of money that some young people spend on games. In my opinion, it’s not just about health – it’s also about wasting money.”
“Actually, I think playing video games can have a positive influence on young people. Some games can stimulate their brains and can help their development. The problems arise when there’s no control over how much they game. If they keep playing without limits then health problems can arise for sure. The time spent playing games should not exceed two hours each time to protect the eyes, in particular. But in general, I believe video games can have a positive impact, when the child has to think about how to solve problems as they play. At my age, I really do not know much about the industry now, but I feel like a lot of games are coming from Japan nowadays and they seem to be having great success.”
[Images via Edoardo Donati Fogliazza/That’s]