Ever since I was a kid, I’ve already loved playing video games. I loved playing with my dolls at home and friends outdoors, but nothing beats the satisfaction whenever I played my favorite 8-bit games on my Family Computer, or Pokemon and Harvest Moon on my GameBoy. I brought my love for gaming with me from high school to engineering school (and even until now)! From my favorite PSP games to online games–I loved playing them all, and there’s one game that actually stuck to me when I was an engineering student– DOTA.
If you’ve played games a lot like me, you’ve probably heard this from an adult/ significant other/teacher: “Stop playing those games! They’ll ruin your studies!” Sighs. Well, it’s true at some point. My parents never stopped me from gaming as a kid, but it’s when I stepped into engineering school that they started to get worried.
I’m writing this story to show the world that not all games are brainless, there are some that actually strive to teach you something. In this case, the game DOTA has actually helped me survive engineering school. Here’s what it taught me.
I’m sure every engineering student will agree with me when I say that in engineering school, multitasking is a skill that everyone has to learn. Copying notes while listening to the professor, and typing the needed equation on your calculator all at the same time is just one of the easiest multitasking feats an engineering student does everyday. As the years in engineering school goes by, your multitasking skills will be tested through numerous projects. In DOTA, players need to have multitasking skills as well. By defending your lane while scouting, ganking, or planning a next clash, the player’s brain is trained to multitask.
In every engineering project, your strategy on how you’re going to plan, execute and improve your projects is a crucial aspect. DOTA is a strategic game that trains one’s planning, decision making skills, logic skills, as well as resource management (items).
In engineering school, no matter how smart and independent you are, you will always need to have this skill in order to survive. Nobody survives engineering school without having to collaborate with other students. From simple homeworks, to complex group projects, teamwork is a vital skill every aspiring engineer needs to have. In DOTA, teamwork is one of the skills that can be honed through this game. Knowing the role of your hero and how it works with other players enables you to work better as a team. Playing as a support, tank, hitter or carry and matching what you do with the teams helps in getting that win.
Engineering is stressful–no one can argue with that! Being an average engineering student with average grades, there came a time that the stress really took it’s toll on me. Back then, I had a government scholarship that kept me in school, so I couldn’t afford to have any failing grades. So, I was really stressed. Guess what helped me loosen up? DOTA! Doing what you love–in my case gaming–saved me from having an academic breakdown. Just playing with my friends took away all my stress.
The game DOTA also taught me how to prioritize my studies and my entertainment. Studying too much was too stressful mentally and emotionally, while playing too much would cost me to lose my education–so I really had to find the balance between.
I believe that there is nothing wrong with playing computer/video games like DOTA, as long as you know how to prioritize what’s needs to be done first, and that you’re not forgetting what’s really important.