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Playing StarCraft Could Boost Your Cognitive Flexibility

Unknown Lamer posted about a year ago | from the tricked-into-learning dept.

Games 124

First time accepted submitter briglass writes "Imagine being a total non-gamer and then suddenly playing an hour of StarCraft a day for almost two months. A new study of mine demonstrates that a group of female gaming novices (seriously novice, as in 0 to 1 hour of gaming per week novice) demonstrated increased cognitive flexibility after playing StarCraft, a sort of fast-paced chess on steroids. The control group played The Sims. It's been well known that video gaming can lead to psychological benefits, such as faster perceptual information processing after playing first-person shooter games. But this new study, published in PLOS ONE, shows that video gaming can also affect higher-level cognitive functions. The StarCraft game was customized to be adaptive and remain challenging as the newly minted gamers honed their skills, and in-game behavior was recorded to determine what aspects of StarCraft leads to the boost in flexibility."

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124 comments

Even better (3, Insightful)

djupedal (584558) | about a year ago | (#44548583)

...start making apps. An hour or more a day for a year. Tacks will start saying they are as sharp as you.

Re:Even better (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549519)

Are we sure the control group didn't get dumber. That actually seems like a preferable outcome to teach people, that the Sims, reality TV, and daytime talk shows actually rot the brain and cause a decrease in mental flexibility and skill.

Even More Betterer (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a year ago | (#44550265)

I imagine that if you played Chutes 'n' Ladders competitively, for time, you would get sharper in some ways, too.

It's all relative. Why did they study Starcraft, rather than Warcraft? (Or Everquest II, or...)

Re:Even More Betterer (1)

Eirenarch (1099517) | about a year ago | (#44550757)

It is largely accepted that SC is the competitive game with the highest skill ceiling and also the most unforgiving (qualities competitive gamers put under the word "hard") although I can argue that Quake is "harder".

Re:Even better (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about a year ago | (#44550995)

If this was a study about how recreational walking increases health would you be telling people they should be off weight-lifting instead?

Warzone2100 (5, Informative)

sobolwolf (1084585) | about a year ago | (#44548617)

is in my opinion better and open source as well. http://wz2100.net/ [wz2100.net] - Graphics are a little dated but the gameplay is very addictive. I would say if the girls were tested with this game they would have been playing for longer than an hour per day ;)

Re:Warzone2100 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44548731)

is in my opinion better and open source as well. http://wz2100.net/ [wz2100.net] - Graphics are a little dated but the gameplay is very addictive. I would say if the girls were tested with this game they would have been playing for longer than an hour per day ;)

I have to agree. While the graphics are a bit dated and dark, it has much better replay value than Starcraft. Even a girl might like it.

Open soures games have really come far. Who would have thought some years back after playing some of the stuff out there?

Disclaimer: I was the beta tester of wz2100. I'm a hard core shill for the game, AND I was fucked in the ass by a goat yesterday.

Re:Warzone2100 (1)

Lotana (842533) | about a year ago | (#44549175)

Thank you for the link. First time I heard of it and quite like it. Open source games came a long way since I gave up on them.

Re:Warzone2100 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44550725)

This, a bunch of us still play this game.

Supreme Commander is all shine and no depth.
Starcraft is a rushfest because of the way it is designed.
Both are highly boring.

WZ is the only one that can keep us entertained simply because of how much there is in the game to do, how you can evolve with time and have to deal with upgrading infrastructure and destroying old to make space for the new defences.
Developing long range weaponry shifts things hugely. Then VTOLs, then long range radars and so on.
All without game-ending broken-as-hell things.
And that doesn't even go in to working in teams and screwing people over.

Then there are others with a different take on it too, such as the older Age of Empires games. (2 in particular)
So much fun to be had there, good progression of tech and buildings, a lot of content, a lot of different races too.
Large maps, gotta juggle several resource incomes. Have to expand base in to forests you devour so there are no large sections of uncertainty and so on.

All RTSes are these days are a few tech trees and terribly easy gameplay with more shine than UE3. No thank you, present.
I don't see why they are making all these horribly simple RTS games. Hell, even WZ isn't that hard either, research, design, look at numbers, build, destroy, shooty shooty, repeat. Why make THAT even simpler and less flexible? What is wrong with you developers?!
I don't know when it happened, but RTSes have been dead for a while. Very few games are of any worth now.
The one genre of games that depended on being complex became simple. Horribly, horribly simple.

Re:Warzone2100 (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | about a year ago | (#44550835)

Supreme Commander is all shine and no depth.
Starcraft is a rushfest because of the way it is designed.
Both are highly boring.

I like StarCraft 2 and enjoy it immensely, even now. I don't find it boring.

Re:Warzone2100 (1)

HyperQuantum (1032422) | about a year ago | (#44551155)

Or this one:

http://megaglest.org [megaglest.org]

Not sure how it compares to Warzone 2100 though.

Science (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44548627)

bitches!

I'm going to bet (0)

tmark (230091) | about a year ago | (#44548633)

that the author is a Starcraft gamer. Look Mom, I'm not playing a stupid game, I'm improving myself.

Re:I'm going to bet (5, Interesting)

Pulzar (81031) | about a year ago | (#44548713)

that the author is a Starcraft gamer

Possibly... but they are also neuroscience and psychology PhDs at UT Austin.

Re:I'm going to bet (1)

sd4f (1891894) | about a year ago | (#44549205)

There were people with PhD's and other higher education who wanted, and did believe that Uri Geller had special powers.

Re:I'm going to bet (1)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | about a year ago | (#44549375)

That's a little off-topic, don't you think?

Re:I'm going to bet (2)

sd4f (1891894) | about a year ago | (#44550079)

Just making a point that having a PhD doesn't mean the person is free from bias and a sceptic all the time. If they want to believe, they'll probably find evidence, just like the scientists who fell hook line and sinker for Uri Geller. The cynic in me tends to agree with what the OP said.

Re:I'm going to bet (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about a year ago | (#44551177)

So you're saying you're going to choose to disbelieve research that you don't want to believe in, on the basis of a purely hypothetical scenario for which there is no evidence?

Bravo.

Re:I'm going to bet (1)

coinreturn (617535) | about a year ago | (#44551397)

So you're saying you're going to choose to disbelieve research that you don't want to believe in, on the basis of a purely hypothetical scenario for which there is no evidence?

Bravo.

I believe he's saying that a single study that yields unlikely (IHHO) results deserves a healthy dose of skepticism.

Re:I'm going to bet (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#44549959)

"how do i get outta this chicken shit outfit"

cognitive skills increased (0, Flamebait)

roc97007 (608802) | about a year ago | (#44548637)

...but social skills and personal hygiene declined.

Re:cognitive skills increased (1, Insightful)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#44548749)

Unless you move to Korea. Then you get hot girls like this brother [sk-gaming.com] . Or maybe this [youtube.com]

Re:cognitive skills increased (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44548957)

Ever seen a Korean girl without the surgery? [asntown.net]

Mffff-mffff hurrrr durrrr duuuuhhhhh.

-- Ethanol-fueled

Re:cognitive skills increased (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#44549075)

Like, so?

Re:cognitive skills increased (1)

kwbauer (1677400) | about a year ago | (#44549463)

OK. there was more than just the eyes that changed there. the "pre" photo looks like she is stoned.

Doing anything cognitively challenging would... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44548647)

Games have nothing to do with it. It seems rather self-evident that doing that involves learning something reasonably challenging for an hour a day for two months would boost cognitive flexibility.

Re:Doing anything cognitively challenging would... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549809)

I doubt it. Learning something hard that requires singular focus is unlikely to have this effect. If you looked at the paper you would notice that varying game styles had differing effects. I'm sure there are other activities besides playing StarCraft that could have this effect, though I'm willing to bet it's not easy to find the right activity with the right conditions as conveniently accessible as an RTS game.

Re:Doing anything cognitively challenging would... (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#44550063)

It seems rather self-evident that doing that involves learning something reasonably challenging

unless you're protoss... then everything is simple :-)

Re:Doing anything cognitively challenging would... (1)

martyros (588782) | about a year ago | (#44550503)

Games have nothing to do with it. It seems rather self-evident that doing that involves learning something reasonably challenging for an hour a day for two months would boost cognitive flexibility.

Click through and read the paper -- it's not paywalled, is relatively short, and I think the big picture is pretty understandable.

If you do, you'll find that 1) cognitive flexibility is a technical term for a specific class of mental abilities 2) StarCraft was shown to increase cognitive flexibility, but (as expected) not some other mental abilities 3) in addition to the control group, he had two SC groups: one which had only one base to control, and one which had 2 bases to control. The ones with two bases to control showed more improvement in cognitive flexibility than those with only one base.

So it does have to do with StarCraft in particular. My question is, in what real-life situations is this "cognitive flexibility" actually useful? He keeps saying there is a "benefit", but it's not clear to me what benefit there is other than being able to do better on some artificial lab tests. (And of course being able to play SC better, which is of course a benefit in itself.)

Re:Doing anything cognitively challenging would... (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about a year ago | (#44551063)

Actually challenging tasks do not necessarily require or enhance cognitive flexibility. More to the point it's not obvious that maps requiring the player address two player and two enemy bases at once would have such a large effect compared to single-base designs.

Just don't read chat logs... (5, Funny)

Freddybear (1805256) | about a year ago | (#44548655)

...or that will undo all the cognitive gains you get from playing.

Re:Just don't read chat logs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549183)

...or that will undo all the cognitive gains you get from playing.

Don' you mean the Forums?

Re:Just don't read chat logs... (1, Offtopic)

Lotana (842533) | about a year ago | (#44549357)

The forums are bad indeed. But even worse are in-game chat if you make a deviation from a standard, automatic "glhf" at the start and "gg" at the end.

I remember one game when my opponent 6-pooled me (Extremely early rush that either right out kills an unprepared player or loses you the game) and his assault got crushed because I scouted it. But instead of responding to his "gg" in a standard way, I said "game could of been better without the cheese".

That hit a nerve: He/she went nuts! For the next 3 minutes me, my play abilities, all my closest relatives and my pets were called "gay" in a certain miss-spelled and obnoxious way that is stereotyped to 13 year olds. If you enjoy trolling, it is comedy gold. For some reason people playing this game take it extremely seriously.

Re:Just don't read chat logs... (0)

znanue (2782675) | about a year ago | (#44549431)

Sooooo... you were BM and surprised he became BM in response? This event apparently left an impression on you and you think its one worth sharing, so you're kind of taking it seriously, yourself. Moreover, the implication that 6 pooling is not a valid strategy is subjective. Your final sentence, that this proves that people take the game "extremely seriously", which I can only surmise means too seriously in your judgement, is belied by the rest of the tone of your post and I think in general a facile statement considering that people put a lot of effort and care into their hobbies/sports.

Try 6 pooling over and over again, btw, you'll quickly discover it takes some flair to actually be good at it.

Move with the cheese (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#44549583)

Sooooo... you were BM and surprised he became BM in response?

I think the fact that I had to use a search engine to discover that this means "bad-mannered" is indicative of how hard it is to discover etiquette, especially for the Asperger demographic (like myself) that's attracted to computers in the first place.

Moreover, the implication that 6 pooling is not a valid strategy is subjective. [...] Try 6 pooling over and over again, btw, you'll quickly discover it takes some flair

In other words, when the cheese beats you, you should move with the cheese [wikipedia.org] in order not to be a scrub [sirlin.net] .

Re:Just don't read chat logs... (1)

Lotana (842533) | about a year ago | (#44549713)

Moreover, the implication that 6 pooling is not a valid strategy is subjective.

Try 6 pooling over and over again, btw, you'll quickly discover it takes some flair to actually be good at it.

I will not argue that 6 pooling is not a valid strategy, nor will I disagree that its execution is quite involved and perhaps rewarding. It certainly will win you games against players who don't scout early.

But it is my opinion that cheese play does not result in a good game. Those games are over in about 5 minutes: Either your rush catches them unprepared and they quit or he was ready for it and you quit. There is no variety or subtlety to it. To do it over and over in order to become good at it is really pointless, other than to maybe get through the bronze ladder faster or maybe to grind out some portrait. May as well master the worker rush that will do the same thing in 3 minutes.

This event apparently left an impression on you and you think its one worth sharing, so you're kind of taking it seriously, yourself.

our final sentence, that this proves that people take the game "extremely seriously", which I can only surmise means too seriously in your judgement, is belied by the rest of the tone of your post and I think in general a facile statement considering that people put a lot of effort and care into their hobbies/sports.

I honestly did not expect my quick post recalling a recent example of amusing chat logs to be analyzed to such a degree. I do play quite often, so do agree that I take the game more seriously than most. That doesn't mean that I would start going berserk at someone that makes a comment about my play or deviates from the standard four-letter communication protocol.

In the end, I don't really see what you are trying to say with your analysis: That I am just the same as was my opponent in question? I would disagree purely on the grounds that I never sunk down to insults over losing in a video game. Losses are valuable as it is the only way to learn and improve your play.

Re:Just don't read chat logs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549603)

you don't complain about cheese. you adapt to it. maladaptive complainers don't last long in ladder play

Re:Just don't read chat logs... (1)

Lotana (842533) | about a year ago | (#44549721)

I wholeheartedly agree.

Boost your cognitive flexibility... (0)

Azure Flash (2440904) | about a year ago | (#44548659)

... at the cost of unrepairable damage to your self-confidence, complete destruction of your morale, a phobia of and inferiority complex towards Koreans and a decade off your lifespan due to intense, repeated stress from matches and ladder anxiety permeating your life. I'll stick to Harvest Moon, personally.

how much was gender a factor? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44548669)

On the broad scale, girls aren't pushed/lured towards the same activities as boys are. How do we know that Starcraft is as effective a contributing factor as, say, team sports or competitive card games?

Dupe (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#44548699)

The dupe is in the first link of the article. It links back to this same page.

Re:Dupe (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44548781)

It's not a dupe, it's just using Christian logic. For example, one can prove that something in the Bible is true simply by quoting the Bible. In this case it is merely referencing itself as proof that the statements made in the article are true. :)

Who authorizes these articles? Are they proofread at all? Are they just straight up advertising for whoever is willing to pay for space on slashdot?

Is there another tech website that has more reliable articles/stories?

Re:Dupe (1)

Lotana (842533) | about a year ago | (#44549275)

You need to get some kind of an award for managing to dragg religion into this discussion.

Re:Dupe (1)

MtHuurne (602934) | about a year ago | (#44548861)

It's not a dupe, it's a cognitive flexibility test. We're going to have a post like this once per day for two months and then they're going to analyze the trends in page views on the articles... Only to conclude that the number of people who even tries to read the article is statistically insignificant.

Bad links all around (1)

Camael (1048726) | about a year ago | (#44548947)

The first one links back to itself.

The third link (to the actual study) leads to server not found/broken page.

Re:Bad links all around (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#44549077)

Third link works for me.......

Starcraft, that's how the Asians are doing it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44548701)

Yeah, you thought they were doing their homework, studying and avoiding drinking parties, but no, no it was always the Starcraft.

Miracle-cure to go!

For the swarm (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44548773)

Tests also revealed that hearing "Nuclear launch detected" when you're expecting to hear "Carrier has arrived" can be extremely demoralizing.

Re:For the swarm (2)

wierd_w (1375923) | about a year ago | (#44549023)

Yes, but assasinating the ghost beaming the target designator can often save your ass. *always* have anti-cloak detection systems with an effective range large enough to reveal enemy ghosts! Always!

(Flying observers work very well here. Set them on continuous patrol. If the enemy player aggressively tries to eliminate them, you know they are planning to nuke, and can pre-empt the strategy. Coupling the observers with some low level flying harrasment craft will give you the "engaged the enemy" alert, pinpointing the location for you. This lets you kill the ghost quickly.)

Re:For the swarm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549207)

GP is referring to the case of building straight to offensive capability X (and not wasting precious resources on defense) in hopes that the enemy is playing defense, but being demoralized when you find out that the enemy was playing straight to a stronger offensive capability that wipes you out before your game-ending units are on the board.

Re:For the swarm (1)

wierd_w (1375923) | about a year ago | (#44549515)

You only need about 4 observers, and 2 scouts. (Don't need a corsair.) Those are in the same tech tree as protoss carrier. Combined, you can spot and harrass the enemy ghosts. The observers and scout ships are produced at the protoss observatory, not the spaceport (IIRC.. been a long time.) The observatory is a prereq for the spaceport. It will cost you a few hundred minerals and a few hundred vespene gas to produce them. You can have them building at the same time you are deploying the spaceport.

There is no excuse for not having detection.

Re:For the swarm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549727)

You still don't get the point, and you're (apparently trying very hard to come across as) an asshole.

Not everyone is as good at Starcraft as you. ESPECIALLY the ones that haven't studied the game as carefully as you.

There *IS* an excuse for not having detection; it's called being a newb. Everyone in this study is a newb. You can bet 95% of them would make mistakes like this.

Re:For the swarm (1)

wierd_w (1375923) | about a year ago | (#44550221)

I realize you are an AC, but try to avoid calling people assholes, please?

Starcraft is one of those games that you MUST get good at quickly, if you intend to survive against other human players, and sometimes, even the computer AI.

In my case, I got particularly good at thwarting nuke strikes as Protoss, by trial and error, and lots of hard luck. We used to play it over the local LAN after hours at work against the boss. That bastard ALWAYS played terran, and would spam production of nuke silo addons. (Litterally, he would built a terran command center, then build the addon, then launch the command center, move it, and build another nuke addon, ad nauseum. By the end of it all, he would have several nuke silos lying in wait, then just spam the living shit out of nukes. Getting a carrier produced in time to effectively deal with him and his little game of human hopscotch was practically impossible. Instead, methods of dealing with his ghosts became essential. High power detectors cost a fortune in the protoss build tree, so I had to become more inventive.

After having my ass served to me on a glowing nuclear hotplate I dont know how many times, I learned the lesson about detectors and learned it well. A scout ship is piddly weak, but is enough to alert you where the hidden nuke bastard is beaming you from, so you can go own their asses with some disposable zealots. The scoutship cant see the ghost unaided, and needs the unarmed observer drone to make the announcement. Just have them on a continuous circular rotation around your outpost, and you will be fine.

Usually, when my boss would try for the nuke and always get bitchslapped, he would try to take out the observers and scoutships with far more powerful valkyries, followed quickly by heavy cruisers as soon as he was able. I learned that deploying some dragoons worked well against the valkyries, and that I could often lure his valkyries in near my fortress harrassment plasma turrets if I lured them in. By the time he had battle cruisers, I had carriers full of fighters.

It was always a battle of speed against the man. Protoss are heavy hitters, but everything is slow to build, and expensive. You HAVE to memorize the tech tree to play them effectively. It's just the way it is.

As for claming that noobyness is a good excuse for not having detection, that only applies to noobs. If you are an experienced enough player to be bumrushing with protoss headfirst straight to carriers, VS human nukes and ghosts, you are well beyond the noob stage, and should probably know better.

Me? I know better than to play starcraft as an online multiplayer game, especially given my woirk hours. The ONLY people that would be on would be Koreans. I dislike stereotypes, but those kids are BRUTAL. I play to have fun, not have 3ms of error make or break a game. :D You want to talk about memorizing tech trees, those kids have it DOWN. LOL.

Re:For the swarm (1)

Lotana (842533) | about a year ago | (#44549393)

In the original Starcraft it was the case. In Starcraft 2 nukes are so extremely rarely seen that it is virtually unheard of. Marines-Marauders-Mines-Medevac balls is the standard.

As for carriers, sadly they had been so nerfed in Starcraft 2 that you also almost never see them. If the Protoss player managed to survive long enough to get Carriers, he normally got the forces to finish the game before the first one finally comes out.

Re:For the swarm (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#44550169)

"Nuclear launch detected" when you're expecting to hear "Carrier has arrived" can be extremely demoralizing

not as demoralizing as "you require more lesbian gas"

In other news (5, Interesting)

Bovius (1243040) | about a year ago | (#44548797)

It turns out that playing video games on a regular basis trains you to be better at the skills those games demand.

It also turns out that some video games train valuable skills while still being fun, and other video games train you to be a vegetable.

News at 11.

Re:In other news (1)

znanue (2782675) | about a year ago | (#44549471)

I have no idea why you were modded up. It is the sort of specious reasoning that sounds good to the hoi polloi but lacks any sort of intellectual discipline. To poke some holes in your very shallow assessment:

  • What skills do video games demand? Specifically what skills does Starcraft 2 demand? I do not think it at all obvious. We can qualify them, but not quantify, and the degree of accuracy in qualifying them seems very suspect, to me.
  • What video games train you to be a vegetable? Seems to feed into stereotypes. Its like saying programming leads you into being a vegetable because you're so often staring into space while you're "doing it".
  • Its not clear/obvious/thoroughly well understood how video game skills relate to skills considered valuable in other areas. The act of formalizing these thoughts and preparing to relate them to other cognitive activities was the point of the study.

I think the most valuable "meta" lesson of university was that formalizing the "obvious" can lead to a better appreciation of nuance and a discipline that leads to substantial discovery. This was as central to the study of art as it was in mathematics.

Re:In other news (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#44550183)

What video games train you to be a vegetable?

angry birds and fruit slice

Re:In other news (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44550309)

I think the most valuable "meta" lesson of university was that formalizing the "obvious" can lead to a better appreciation of nuance and a discipline that leads to substantial discovery. This was as central to the study of art as it was in mathematics.

More significantly, studying the obvious sometimes ends up with you realizing that the obvious is 100% wrong. A lot of what people used to believe was obvious we now know is wrong. To add to that, if you tell people a scientific result, they will often say that it was obvious, but they'll say the same thing if you tell them the opposite result! In this case, perhaps that very same poster would be here saying "oh, of course" if this story had been saying that playing Starcraft has no beneficial effects.

Re:In other news (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44550759)

Some games also turn you in to Marmite.
Case in point, playing game, suddenly rage-demon down Skype call.

I will never understand why people rage at games seriously.
I can understand being like "aw come on fuck that haha", but things like "I hope you get 15 kinds of cancer you fuckface shitcunt" just take it to a whole level of "why?".

And screw you too, CAPTCHA, Marmite is far from edible.

Re:In other news (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44550809)

... train valuable skills ...

It's called problem-solving. Psychologists are starting to realize it's the antidote to senility. Remember the fascination with 'brain training' (meaning linguistic/mathematical/spatial puzzles) software a few years ago? This means grannies playing card games every day is a good thing. Obviously an RTS game requires more concentration via micro-managing and the cost of real-time responses.

Even 'Ms pac-man', is a puzzle using time, path, hand-eye co-ordination goals. A more complex version is 'Worms'. Compare this with the move and shoot games like 'Diablo 2' and 'Quake 3'.

Re:In other news (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about a year ago | (#44551025)

Cognitive flexiblity isn't a skill, it's a rather generic mental capability associated with improved performance in many tasks. Therefore activities which improve it are very important to research. Particular as this study concluded that certain kinds of level design provide larger improvements.

Quick question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44548827)

When you referenced a study that you did with a link, and I clicked that link, it just took me straight back to this page. Can you please edit your submission with a link to your study?

Also, why are we talking about a 15 year old game? Am I missing something here?

Slashdot is turning into a bizarre circle jerk.

Re:Quick question (1)

narcc (412956) | about a year ago | (#44549761)

Turning into?

AND LISTENING TO OZZIE !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44548835)

Can make you bonkers !!

Broken Link (1)

briglass (608949) | about a year ago | (#44548899)

Re:Broken Link (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about a year ago | (#44549053)

dude, are you new here? if you have any stake in the article or summary, don't read the comments! You'll just be ripped apart by douchebags who are either armchair geniuses, grammar nazis, general trolls, or other. they love hearing a good idea and then tearing someone down. it's like a bar where bitter men gather to complain. they read news headlines aloud and bitch about them.

Re:Broken Link (1)

briglass (608949) | about a year ago | (#44549085)

Ha ha -- I'm familiar with the Slashdot comments circus -- all part of the fun! I just hope an editor can fix that first link

Re:Broken Link (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about a year ago | (#44549245)

I just hope an editor can fix that first link

bahaha you're definitely new here!

Re:Broken Link (1)

briglass (608949) | about a year ago | (#44549319)

Heh -- well, it's probably been about a decade since I spent serious time on here. Kinda odd that while in the firehose the url changed 3 or 4 times, at least it ended up with this one, instead of the one instance where it was the url below concatenated 3 times in a row Again: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/ulterior-motives/201308/can-video-games-make-you-smart-or-least-more-flexible [psychologytoday.com]

Re:Broken Link (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549055)

If you played Starcraft, you'd have the necessary coordination to click on that link.

Re:Broken Link (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#44550211)

"stop poking me!"

Fast-paced chess on steroids (1, Insightful)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about a year ago | (#44548913)

I doubt anyone who makes such a claim has ever seen high level fast-paced chess.

Re:Fast-paced chess on steroids (2)

Bonewalker (631203) | about a year ago | (#44549181)

Many, many more variables to account for in Starcraft than Chess. Also, Chess is turn-based, while SC is real-time, so obviously there is the potential for your move to be countered before you even finish it. Now, the amount of memorization done for Chess is far greater than for SC, especially if a game goes deep. SC is so much more loose and more open-world than Chess that it doesn't lend itself to memorization of moves like Chess and its rigid structure do.

Re:Fast-paced chess on steroids (1)

znanue (2782675) | about a year ago | (#44549523)

The two games are not completely analogous, but I take some issue with the characterization that chess requires greater memory. There is something fundamental about the "rigidity" of chess and the "fluidity" of starcraft, but as skill rises, fluidity heavily diminishes for the first "phase" of most games. Pattern recognition, and thus, the underlying memory of patterns, is, to my perspective, as crucial to SC2 as it is to chess, even though SC2 is real-time. Execution in chess is about as deep as a puddle, (you lift a piece, you set it down), and you can lose a game in SC2 even if you know better what to do than your opponent because execution in sc2 has almost an infinite depth. In practice, however, execution remains somewhat similar for the top players and pattern recognition and decision making are essential to win consistently. The patterns are "fuzzier" in SC2, but they are just as varied, just as important, and just as memorized as chess.

Re:Fast-paced chess on steroids (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549257)

I've watched high-level Speed/Blitz chess. I've also watched high-level Starcraft tournaments.

I can keep track of speed-chess, even if it takes a while for me to process the moves.
There's no goddamned way in any hell you care to name that I can keep track of a high-level Starcraft game.

Re:Fast-paced chess on steroids (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#44549429)

I've watched high-level Speed/Blitz chess.

Speed/Blitz chess is nothing compared to lightning chess. One minute for the entire game, that's where it's at.

Re:Fast-paced chess on steroids (1)

TechyImmigrant (175943) | about a year ago | (#44549575)

I've watched high-level Speed/Blitz chess.

Speed/Blitz chess is nothing compared to lightning chess. One minute for the entire game, that's where it's at.

That's nothing compared to GigaHz Chess. One billion moves a second. That's where it's at.

Re:Fast-paced chess on steroids (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549265)

Show me a chess grandmaster topping 300 actions per minute.

Re:Fast-paced chess on steroids (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44550269)

If you count every time he looks at a chess piece (selects his units) as an action; then I am pretty sure its happened.

Re:Fast-paced chess on steroids (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about a year ago | (#44551099)

That's a terrible analogy.

Re:Fast-paced chess on steroids (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about a year ago | (#44551093)

That's like saying that you can't call a bobcat a "fast, strong cat" because cheetahs exist.

Playing StarCraft Could Boost Your Virginity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549339)

Closer to the thruth.

Re:Playing StarCraft Could Boost Your Virginity (1)

Lotana (842533) | about a year ago | (#44549415)

Considering Virginity is a binary state of being, it can't possibly "boost it". It just helps ensure that it never changes state from the default. :-)

Re:Playing StarCraft Could Boost Your Virginity (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#44550235)

"virginity" is just a word... like "love"... what matters is the connection... or lack thereof

Training improves ability!?!?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549399)

This is great news! No one ever had a clue that training something might improve the abilities used to do that thing! This changes everything! (who the f*ck comes up with these bullshit studies?)

Re:Training improves ability!?!?! (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#44550243)

politicians have too much training in how to fuck up the country

Re:Training improves ability!?!?! (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about a year ago | (#44551111)

Durr, I dunno AC, maybe the study wasn't about how playing Starcraft makes you good at Starcraft.

If you really want to exercise your brain.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44549481)

If you really want to exercise your brain try this sail boat navigation game: http://sailonline.org/

consider the source (1)

Gravis Zero (934156) | about a year ago | (#44549929)

But this new study, published in PLOS ONE, shows that video gaming can also affect higher-level cognitive functions.

do you really believe studies from a magazine that cant even spell it's own name right.

Re:consider the source (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about a year ago | (#44551121)

You preferred PLoS ONE?

If it works with chimps, why not women? (1)

loufoque (1400831) | about a year ago | (#44550501)

We've already made such observations with chimps.
Why is it surprising it works with women too?

You know what would be even better? (2)

Phoeniyx (2751919) | about a year ago | (#44550833)

Pick up a math or problem solving book and go through it! Seriously. I wasted so much time in my 20s playing Quake 3 and Starcraft, it isn't even funny. I was pretty good at it and quitting wasn't easy. What I would give to have that time back to actually do something productive.

only Starcraft? (1)

amoeba1911 (978485) | about a year ago | (#44551167)

If playing Starcraft could boost your cognitive flexibility, then playing Zero-K could shoot it through the roof all the way to the moon and back.
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