London-based anonymous helpline CALM has published new research finding that gaming has a positive impact on people’s mental health, helping them to connect with each other.
As many as 50 percent of gamers and streamers in CALM’s study used gaming as a means of relaxation, whereas only 7 percent who don’t play thought it would have a positive impact on mental health; CALM has suggested that this is due to the remaining stereotype that gaming is bad for you, with a quarter of people thinking it would have a negative impact.
The survey asked 2,085 people about their opinions on gaming, and overall found it to be useful for people who were lonely, contrary to the stereotype. Whilst 50 percent found it a relaxing activity, 42 percent also stated that gaming was an effective way to "escape from everyday life". In fact, 26 percent of gamers viewed fellow gamers and streamers as "confident".
The research has been released to coincide with Jingle Jam 2022, where gamers are raising funds for charities such as CALM. Over 11 years, more than £20 million has been raised.
Given the massive scale of the mobile gaming industry, it is highly likely that many of the players finding an escape within games are doing so on mobile. Earlier this year, a six-week study by the University of Oxford surveyed close to 40,000 gamers, being the largest of its type to date, and found no causal link between bad mental health and games across any genre.
"There's an unhelpful cliché of what gaming and gamers are like – but this couldn't be further from the truth. Countless people are connecting through gaming – both playing and streaming – and the benefits of being a part of the gaming community are clear to see," said CALM CEO Simon Gunning.
Recently, Azur Games examined the sound design used in hypercasual games and the impact this has on gamers.