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reality is broken

Goals and Fiero

Jane McGonigal brings up a very important point about the type of work that is expected of us in the modern world.  Often times, the work we do makes us question why we are really doing it.  We may have an ultimate end goal, such as to make money or to graduate college, which is also in order to make money, but we seldom see any satisfaction along the way.  Along with that, we have to spend much time thinking about how to meet our faraway goal.  This can be very frustrating.  McGonigal explains why this makes many video games so appealing.  There is always an ultimate goal, usually to beat the game, but there are smaller, more rewarding goals along the way.  Her example of World of Warcraft is perfect.  The game gives you a goal, tells you how to do it, and also once you complete it, gives you a physical reward, acting as proof to yourself that you completed this task.  This can be very appealing as it removes the frustration that our daily lives give us.  We go all day working at a job, usually not seeing direct impacts of what we do. We might serve someone their food at a restaurant as a server or even prepare the medications someone needs as a pharmacist, but we never actually see someone come back to life after almost dying of starvation or see someone’s horrible disease get cured thanks to our work.  There is no impact on other people that we can see, which explains why so many people enjoy video games.  Most games will reward you on the spot and that reward helps us get further to our ultimate goal.  In real life, that is simply not possible.  In the game world, we constantly get that feeling of fiero, or that extreme feeling of happiness or excitement.  Completing these specific tasks will give us this feeling because we accomplished something.  To be able to get this primal feeling multiple times in an hour as each task is completed and checked off is a great feeling.  This is not possible in the real world simply because we cannot possibly complete that many goals in such a short amount of time, making real life goals and actions much less addicting than video game ones.

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Discussion

One thought on “Goals and Fiero

  1. It is true that fiero is the reason why games look appealing and I agree with you that real life is not as fun as living in a virtual game where there are goals and achievements, tasks and adventures. Although fiero makes gaming fun an appealing, Mcgonigal mentions that fact that too much fiero can lead to addiction, which is a problem. Since we live in the real world and our action affect our real life, being addicted to a game, because of the awesome feeling it gives us, can lead us to constantly play the game and forget about our responsibilities in the real world. We get news about people so hooked on to gaming that they forget to feed their own children:

    http://www.nbcnews.com/id/19766590/ns/us_news-crime_and_courts/t/police-babies-starved-while-parents-gamed/#.UZw3DSvwKDg

    I agree with you, gaming gives us the feeling of accomplishment, something we sometimes cannot get in our real life and fiero gives us this feeling of complete power and encouragement, yet this same feeling can be have negative consequences on our real life.

    Posted by aditipre | May 21, 2013, 11:14 pm

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