New Scientific Study Provides Link Between Gaming And Creativity

A new study has made a link between playing video games and showing off creativity in the workplace through the power of optimism.

A recent new research study done by French scientists Maxence Mercier and Todd Lubart has drawn a correlation between playing video games and increased creativity in the workplace through what the study terms as “psychological capital”. According to the study, it seems like optimism is the primary spark for creativity.

A full mediation was observed: playing video games was positively associated with higher optimism, which in turn was associated with more creativity in the workplace. 

While many politicians and parental groups in the past have pointed towards video games as a cause of violence, the study shows that in workplaces, playing video games actually has a net benefit with a small, but significant increase in optimism among the studied. Optimism, as the study goes on to say, can have many benefits.

Optimistic individuals have positive explanatory styles: they attribute prior and present negative events as external, temporary and situation-specific. In contrast, positive events are perceived as internal, durable and general. Because of this, optimists are better equipped to take initiative, persevere in the face of difficulty, take risks, apply efficient problem-solving techniques, and be more assertive and bolder than pessimistic people.

Considering the various strategies, worlds, and attitudes that can appear in video games, whether through a sense of accomplishment or wonder at the world the game takes place in, gaining more optimism through some progress or having fun can come from a variety of ways, according to the study. This even extends to overcoming difficult obstacles.

To persevere through adversity, an optimistic style is essential. When playing a videogame and being confronted with failure, it can be tempting to just give up. Being optimistic is thus very helpful in this sort of situation, as optimism helps to see negative events as temporary and thus surmountable, even more so when such efforts usually end in rewarding outcomes.

Such games include highly difficult games like From Software titles, which are actually brought up in the study due to how challenging they are and showing how important optimism is in terms of gaming. However, multiplayer games, such as MMOs, are also used as examples for things to increase psychological capital.

Consistent with their hypotheses, MMORPGS online social interactions helped players establish more social capital, which in turn led to higher PsyCap, across all four components of the PsyCap. For these reasons, it was hypothesized that overall PsyCap and its components would mediate the relationship between video games and creativity in the workplace.

With everything that video games can do for the mood in a variety of ways, hopefully positive correlations like what’s shown in the study will be found more and more often in the future.After all, people are also shown to be more productive if their mood is good.

Hunter is senior news writer at SegmentNext.com. He is a long time fan of strategy, RPG, and tabletop games. When he is not playing games, he likes to write about them.