Level Up Family Fun: How Video Games Bring Relatives Together

Americans spend a significant portion of their days sitting motionless in front of screens, whether it’s for watching TV or surfing the Internet. However, if you spend that time playing the right video games, it could actually have a positive impact on your life!

Strengthening Family Bonds

A study conducted at Concordia University in Montreal, Canada, found that online social network games (SNGs) played with family members can help solidify familial bonds. These games offer an engaging and convenient way to interact with your siblings, parents, and other relatives while fulfilling your social obligations.

As families increasingly find themselves spread out across countries and continents, maintaining those connections becomes even more important. SNGs provide a cost-effective way for family members to bridge geographical boundaries and stay connected with one another.

More Than Just Entertainment

SNGs don’t just provide a source of entertainment; they also give family members something to discuss with one another, improving the quality of their interactions. What’s more, these games can help to reunite relatives who may only have been in infrequent contact with one another.

The study found that distant cousins and even aging aunts and uncles were able to reconnect with their families by playing these online games together. This shows that SNGs have the power to break down both communication and age barriers, as it’s not just young siblings using these platforms to connect.

The New Family Pastime

Online games such as Candy Crush have now replaced traditional board games as family pastimes, making these online interactions even more important for social bonding. Mia Consalvo, a researcher at Concordia University, states that “families that play together play the longest and have the greatest sense of duty to one another as players.”

This demonstrates that designing future SNGs with families in mind could extend the life of the games beyond what it would be if only friends or strangers were playing together.

The Benefits of Playing Video Games

Playing video games with family members isn’t the only way to reap the benefits of gaming. Regularly playing video games can help you develop a variety of skills, from improving hand-eye coordination to learning effective problem-solving strategies.

Moreover, a recent study found that gaming can have a positive impact on the brain, particularly on the hippocampus, which plays a significant role in memory and spatial navigation. This is great news for gamers, as improved spatial navigation and memory can have a positive impact on daily life.

Gaming has also been linked to better decision-making skills, with research suggesting that gamers make decisions faster than non-gamers without sacrificing accuracy. This could be particularly beneficial in high-pressure situations where quick thinking is crucial, such as during an emergency or in the workplace.

Choosing the Right Games

While playing video games can offer a plethora of benefits, it’s important to choose the right games to play. Violent video games, for example, have been linked to increased aggression and anti-social behavior.

Instead, look for games with educational value or those that promote creative thinking and problem-solving. Puzzle games, strategy games, and even some action-adventure titles can offer these benefits while still being enjoyable to play.

Setting Limits

Lastly, despite the numerous benefits of playing video games, it’s essential to set limits on your gaming time. Too much time spent in front of a screen can lead to a sedentary lifestyle, which can contribute to obesity and other health problems.

In addition, excessive gaming can interfere with your sleep schedule and negatively impact your social life. Make sure to strike a balance between your gaming sessions and other daily activities to ensure you’re reaping all the benefits gaming has to offer while maintaining a healthy lifestyle.


SNGs and other video games offer numerous benefits, from strengthening family bonds to improving cognitive function. When used in moderation and played with family members, these games can have a positive impact on your life—just remember to choose the right games and set appropriate limits to your gaming time. Happy gaming!