Media Recommendation · Writing & Creative Hobbies

Benefits of Playing Video Games #5: More Game Genres and Skills You Can Develop

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I promise this is the last picture of a controller for this series! I imagine you’d be tired of it by now. ๐Ÿ˜† [๐Ÿ–ผโ—]
Welcome to Part 2 of video game genres and skills you can develop with them! Today we’ll look at four major genres we didn’t cover last week โ€“ Simulation, Strategy, Sports and others. ๐Ÿ˜€


Genre: Simulation

Sub-Genre: Construction and Management Simulation

Ever wanted to feel like a business tycoon? If yes, this is your genre โ€“ you can open your own restaurant / theme park / some tourist place / game development company / etc and rise to success! ๐Ÿ’ฐ๐Ÿ’ฐ๐Ÿ’ฐ

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Planning, resource management, management (in general), economics, multi-tasking, decision making
  • Recommendation: I have waaaay too many to list (and mine are a bit old ๐Ÿ˜…), so here’s a more recent list for you: 11 Best Tycoon Games to Play in 2017

Sub-Genre: Life Simulation

Want to experience a (digital) life different than your own? Then this genre is for you! These games let you experience life through artificial lifeforms (be it human or otherwise) that you can customise and decide what to do. There are different types of life simulation games:

  • Pet: Own, maintain, train and play with a pet!
  • Social: Create a digital version of yourself and live a different life!
  • Biological: Also called a god game, here you can control an entire species / population / tribe and lead them to prosperity!

While I enjoy all three types, personally I prefer god games; it’s really interesting to see them grow and prosper over the in-game years. ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Creativity, planning, observation and awareness, decision making, empathy (especially if you get attached to them like me ๐Ÿ˜›)
  • Recommendation: Monster Rancher series, Spore, The Sims series

Sub-Genre: Vehicle Simulation

I’m sure some of you have heard of a flight simulator before! Vehicle simulation games aim to let you experience operating the vehicle as realistically as possible, so it’s a good genre to try if you’ve ever dreamed of operating a plane, a train, a race car, or even a spaceship! I should probably warn you that they’re not usually designed for entertainment (a.k.a. I find them boring ๐Ÿ˜…).

True story: When I was 10, I played this space flight simulator. I was supposed to land this vehicle on the moon, using the thrusters to slow the fall while keeping an eye on the fuel gauge. Sad to say I had a 100% crash rate and I’ve never played it since. ๐Ÿ˜…

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Multi-tasking, hand-eye coordination, observation and awareness
  • Recommendation: I can’t remember the name of the space flight simulator I played, but you can try these: The Best PC Simulation Games

Genre: Strategy

Sub-Genre: Real-Time Strategy (RTS)

The most well-known of all strategy genres, this is likely what someone is referring to when s/he mentions strategy games! What happens when you start a game is: you end up in the wilderness somewhere, and you’ll need to gather resources, build an army and defences before the inevitable war with other players, where you then defeat and conquer the map. Yep, lots of thinking required there. ๐Ÿ˜†

Sub-Genre: Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA)

Also known as Action Real-Time Strategy (ARTS), think of this as an epic digital paintball fight between two teams! Each player controls a character from both teams, fight through computer-generated minions and destroy the opposing team. ๐Ÿ’ช

Sub-Genre: Real-Time Tactics (RTT)

Also known as fixed-unit real-time strategy, this works like RTS games that you go to battle with other players, but without the whole gathering resources and building army thing! Because you have a fixed number of army units, the strategy is focused on the battlefield tactics. If you’re read The Art of War by Sun Tzu and want to put it to action, this is the genre for you. ๐Ÿ˜†

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Strategy, planning, observation and awareness, reaction time, decision making, multi-tasking
  • Recommendation: I personally haven’t played any, but try these: The Best Real-time Tactics Games of All Time

Sub-Genre: Turn-Based Strategy (TBS)

They’re like RTS games that a lot of thinking required, but turn-based so you can take all the time in the world to make your next move! This is for you if you like strategy games but at your own pace. ๐Ÿ˜€

Sub-Genre: 4X Games

EXplore, eXpand, eXploit, eXterminate! In this genre, you build a civilisation from scratch, usually in a historical setting through a large period of time; this may be real-time or turn-based (and overlap with the above sub-genres). ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Strategy, planning, observation and awareness, decision making, multi-tasking
  • Recommendation: Civilization series

Sub-Genre: Artillery Games

With a name like “Artillery”, you might think of this as a Shooter sub-genre! While there are certainly shooting involved, the focus is less on aiming / accuracy and more on strategy / thinking. Unlike a Shooter game where you just point, aim and shoot, in Artillery games you have to take note of various factors such as terrain, wind speed, effects of each artillery, etc. ๐ŸŽฏ

While technically Angry Birds can count as an Artillery game (the way you “fire” these birds in a curved trajectory), it’s officially categorised as a Puzzle game series. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Accuracy, strategy, observation and awareness
  • Recommendation: GunBound, Worms series

Sub-Genre: Tower Defence

An interesting sub-genre, Tower Defence games usually have a simple map layout with paths running from Point A (the entrance) to Point B (your base). Computer-generated monsters called creeps will travel from A to B, and you need to build towers to defeat these creeps before they reach your base โ€“ if x creeps make it (where x is your number of lives), you lose the game! Defeating these creeps give you more money to build more towers for the current or next (more difficult) stage. Can you complete all the stages before your base’ lives run out?


Genre: Sports

Sub-Genre: Racing Games

Fly like the wind! These games lets you feel like an F1 racer without the risks. ๐Ÿ˜€

While a lot of them actual racing involved, like those arcade games you may have seen, some are free-roaming where you can race your car across the city for quests and missions and whatnot, or to escape from the police / gangs / etc!

Sub-Genre: Sports Games

Traditional sports in digital form! Here you can be a star soccer / basketball / etc player with the crowd cheering for you, or compete with friends. And not all games use the mouse + keyboard or standard controllers; a lot of consoles now have motion controllers or sensors, so you can actually swing the table tennis bat like a pro. ๐Ÿ˜†

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Hand-eye coordination, reaction time, accuracy, competitiveness (multiplayer)
  • Recommendation: I can’t recommend any as sports games aren’t my thing, but try these: The 25 Best Sports Video Games of All Time (includes other sports sub-genres)

Sub-Genre: Sports-Based Fighting

Think mixed martial arts and wrestling tournaments on a screen!


Genre: Miscellaneous

Sub-Genre: Music & Dancing Games

I don’t know about other regions, but the arcade games that are popular in mine are usually this genre! These games usually involve following a rhythm or sequence using buttons or by dancing, and is fun to play when you have a bunch of friends together. The dancing ones even have an additional benefit: exercise! ๐Ÿคธโ€

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Rhythm and timing, hand-eye coordination, reaction time, music appreciation, playing music instrument (in a sense that one has to follow the timing to create a particular melody), dancing (for dancing games)
  • Recommendation: Guitar Hero series, Just Dance series

Sub-Genre: Party Games

The fun kind of games to play at a party!

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Hand-eye coordination, cooperation, competitiveness
  • Recommendation:

Sub-Genre: Puzzle & Logic Games

Like using your head? Try a puzzle or logic game! Like its name suggests, this genre involves puzzle solving (example: tile matching) or the use of logic (example: escaping a maze). These are also good for short bursts of gaming as they usually involve stages that you can complete one at a time.

Fun fact: This is one of my favourite genres too! When I used to travel by train to work, I played a bunch of these games during the 10-minutes ride. ๐Ÿ˜†

Sub-Genre: Trivia Games

Like trivia game shows on TV, you answer questions to get points, and some even has a time limit for you! Good for you to practice before participating in a game show. ๐Ÿ˜†

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Memory, calm in the face of chaos (especially with that ticking clock in the background ๐Ÿ˜…)
  • Recommendation: I personally haven’t played any but try these: 15 Best Trivia Game Apps

Sub-Genre: Board Games

Digital version of board games; yes, you can play chess and Monopoly on a computer! These are good when its hard to find friends to play together or you want to quietly build your skills before the next big family board game day. ๐ŸŽฒ

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Luck, strategy, observation and awareness, decision making, cooperation, competitiveness
  • Recommendation: I can’t recommend any as I don’t play these much, but try these: The Best Board Games You Can Play on PC

Sub-Genre: Card Games

The first thing that comes to your mind is probably solitaire! Yep, solitaire has been part of the Windows OS for years and years, but did you know that you can also play other card games like poker online? This genre also include digital versions of collectible card games, such as Magic the Gathering and

  • Possible Skills to Develop: Strategy, observation and awareness, decision making, planning (collecting and preparing collectible card decks), memory (because one needs to remember if a straight is better than a flush!)
  • Recommendation: Hearthstone, Magic: The Gathering

And Yet Another Disclaimer!

Now that you’re well-versed with the genres of video games, here’s an epic curveball for your: a video game can have multiple genres! So before buying a video game, make sure to check out its genre and also its ESRB ratings and content descriptors. ๐Ÿ˜€

Fun fact!

Did you know that there are world video game tournaments called eSports? Think of them as a digital version of mixed martial arts competitions; there are international tournaments held yearly in many countries, and there is a cash prize for the winner! If you think you’re good, try going for that. ๐Ÿ˜†


This is the last post in the Benefits of Playing Video Games series, so I hope you enjoyed it as a whole. ๐Ÿ˜€

What are you waiting for? Play a video game today! ๐ŸŽฎ

~Nicolle โค

A Short Self-Compassionate Letter

Dear Self,

You’re really hardworking and deddicatedto do all that research to make this post better. ๐Ÿ˜€


More in the Benefits of Playing Video Games series:

#1: Cognitive Benefits and a Mini-Rant
#2: Health & Social Benefits
#3: Creativity and a Disclaimer
#4: Game Genres and Skills You Can Develop
#5: More Game Genres and Skills You Can Develop โฌ… You are here!

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6 thoughts on “Benefits of Playing Video Games #5: More Game Genres and Skills You Can Develop

  1. Thank God for that disclaimer. Because although action is my fave, I’m also in โค with all the genres mentioned above EXCEPT PUZZLES. Yes, I accept I'm a game loving weirdo!!!
    Thanks Nikki!!

    P.S. I won the case!!! Got a new game. GEARS OF WAR!! I love it so far!!
    Also love KINECT SPORTS… because they help me exercise more.๐Ÿ˜†๐Ÿ˜†

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha, I’m a game loving weirdo too! I love all the genres except sports. ๐Ÿ˜†

      Great that you won the case! ๐ŸŽฎ๐ŸŽฎ๐ŸŽฎ
      Haven’t played Gears of War but I’ve heard it’s good; isn’t it considered a third-person shooter action though? ๐Ÿ˜›

      Liked by 1 person

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