Online Gaming: Pakistan’s New Favorite Pastime
Pakistan has been keeping up with the global video gaming wave
For a vast majority of the world, video games are the face of virtual entertainment. As the internet has brought on a new age of file sharing and online connectivity, it is also to blame for bringing about the culture of online gaming. While games are designed to be a fun experience on their lonesome, not a single gamer would disagree to the saying “It’s always more fun to play with others”.
This simple idea has grown into a way of life for not only teenagers but also full grown working adults who pour their salaries towards fulfilling their gaming needs. Geographical distances are non-existent when it comes to the internet and by using this power, game makers have connected thousands of gamers worldwide, sharing the game they feel so passionately about and competing against each other on the world stage.
Pakistan has not been immune to this tide. The wide array of gaming genres offering online competition and co-op game modes have not only brought about a change in the lives of a typical Pakistani gamer but also brought about the trend of gaming zones. Establishments that provide multiple PCs that are connected via LAN (local area network) and gaming consoles like the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One, to allow gamers to dash it out in fan favorite games. From first person shooters like Call of Duty (COD), Medal of Honor (MOHA) to MMORPGs (massively multiplayer online role playing games) with the likes of World of Warcraft and MOBAs (multiplayer online battle arenas) like the famous Defence of the Ancients (DOTA).
Video games paved the way for this new business but they had already invaded local households long before the inception of gaming zones. One need only buy a gaming console, or if you know your way around a computer, build a gaming PC, and lastly but most importantly get your hands on a decent internet connection. Another boost to Pakistan’s gaming culture came in the form of Sumail Hassan Syed, who at the age of 15 moved to the U.S from Karachi to chase his dream of becoming a professional e-gamer and went on to be recruited by a DOTA 2 team called the Evil Geniuses. Sumail, helped his team to win the DOTA 2 Asian Championship in 2015 and also captured third place at the 2016 International DOTA 2 Championship. He is now the third highest earning gamer in the world.
The online experience; the rewards and the competition truly engage anyone who is willing to give it a try. To the dismay of parents however, that engagement may turn into addiction and this has been for the longest time a reason for many family arguments. It is without doubt that the online multiplayer experience is a world of its own and getting lost in it can be a lot easier than one can imagine. You start playing, have fun, try to complete one last quest, one last match and by the time you are done, you realize that several hours have passed by. While for many it provides the much needed escape from the pressures of our daily lives the fact remains that it is a bittersweet distraction, one that can be very costly if not regulated properly.
Online gaming, for better or worse has become a part of our lives and for the time being it does not look like it’s going anywhere. On our part we can dedicate a certain amount of time to it in a way that it doesn’t interfere with our responsibilities; for in doing so we can get the best out of both worlds.