The importance of video games during a pandemic


By Justin Vaughan, Staff Reporter

As a result of  COVID-19, Michigan schools have transitioned to online learning, businesses have shut down, and Americans have been told to stay inside the comfort of their homes to reduce the spread of the virus. In these challenging times, it is essential to protect ourselves and others by wearing a mask, washing your hands, and, most importantly, staying inside if you are showing symptoms. 

However, with these social distancing measures in place, everyone around the world is coming up with ideas of how to stay positive and entertain themselves during quarantine—one of my favorites being video games. 

A lot of video games have seen a significant increase in players since the beginning of quarantine, and who can blame them? According to, “Steam,” the digital marketplace for games, reached a record of 20,313,451 concurrent users using its platform. Additionally, the battle royale “Fortnite” added to the 70 percent increase in traffic in Italy, and “Counter-Strike: Global Defense” reached an all-time high of 1,023,2290 concurrent players.

Whether you’re a casual player or pro, it isn’t hard to get stuck playing a video game for hours. It’s no surprise that a lot of streaming platforms dedicated to gaming have seen this increase in viewership. 

Amid a pandemic, video games have more to offer than just entertainment. Communication is also an important benefit of these platforms. Games such as “Fortnite” or “Counter-Strike: Global Offensive” offer a chance for players to chat online through in-game mics that allow communication through platforms, such as PS4, XBOX, and PC. During these times, it’s frustrating not to be able to talk to your friends face to face, but because of these incorporated chats in games, you can still socialize with your friends. 

As a result of the increased gaming activity, developers are now incorporating new features into games and platforms. For example, “Fortnite” recently held a virtual in-game concert featuring the singer Travis Scott where he debuted his latest track, “The Scotts.”  From entertainment to chatting with friends, video games have the opportunity to distract you from reality when it seems like there’s nothing to do. It goes to show that the internet is a powerful tool and that anyone who has access to these platforms should take advantage of them while they are staying safe at home.