Is There a Primal Connection Between Humans and Video Games?

Why do so many people play, follow, watch, and love video games /esports?

Why is that number of people growing so rapidly every year?

Is the connection between gaming and humans primal?

As humans, ancestors of our species spent most of their time hunting, gathering, and moving daily to survive (find food, etc.). Humans needed their physical capabilities to survive. As far back as 15,000 years ago we have records of people competing in running, swimming etc. These competitions were derived from the basic skills needed to survive. Over time, these competitions evolved into purely recreational sports such as Football and Basketball.

In today’s economy, and the economy of the future, more and more humans are making a living and surviving based on technology and their abilities to react to information produced on a machine, make inputs to the machine, and work as a team with other humans doing the same things.

As humans build more technology and rely upon it increasingly, it makes sense that we would create competitive “games” around those “survival” skills, just as we have in the past.

While some say traditional sports spawned from some primal instincts to hunt, survive, and thrive, I contend that the large attraction to epsorts is born out of the same instincts. The only thing that has changed is that instead of hunter gatherers, we are now a species that harnesses technology to survive. Therefore, it makes sense that we seek to compete in games that resonate with those same skills and abilities.


Stephen Hays is Managing Partner at Deep Space Ventures, a Micro-VC based in Dallas, TX that focuses on both Esports and B2B enterprise startups.

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