Friendships, reduced stress add to lure for campus gamers


Gaming is one of the favorite pastimes on campus, and there’s no shortage of students at Detroit Mercy who play.

Sayf Saleem, a pre-med bio major, says he games only one to two days a week, mainly due to school and work.

But during his vacations he plays games four to five days a week.

Saleem usually plays on the Xbox One console. His go-to game is Minecraft.

“Minecraft lets me display my imagination into reality and share it with my friends, even though that reality is a digital one,” he said.

“Video games let me kill what little extra time by doing what I love,” he said. “They help me focus and remember that life is really just about having fun.”

Socializing is a big part of the attraction.

“I think everyone who is an avid gamer can agree that video games, especially online ones, can make you life-long friends,” Saleem said. “I currently know someone from Chicago and have known him for four years. We are planning to meet up soon and to finally bring the digital friendship to a physical world.”

Devonne McCullough, a communication major with a business administration minor, plays video games about three days a week.

He generally plays sports games such as 2K or Madden.

“A game I found to be very interesting that I have been playing lately is Division 2,” he said. “Yeah, that game is pretty fun.”

Division 2 goes under the full title of “Tom Clancy’s The Division 2,” a first-person shooter (FPS) game.

McCullough tries not to let himself get carried away and believes that when he does get really into a game it quickly consumes two to three hours.

But compared to most people, that isn’t too bad, he added.

He limits himself to around an hour or two to relax.

“If you just stay strictly dedicated to your homework, you get a bit stressed out, so you need something to let your mind relax,” he said. “After I get done with that, I just start doing my homework again and I noticed when I do that I’m a lot more dedicated to do my homework.”

He also uses gaming as a reward for himself when he does well.

Cole Long, a psychology major, is like many other students on campus who prefer Xbox One.

He often plays FPS and action games and is moving away from sports games.

Like McCullough, he recently picked up the game Division 2.

But his time is limited, he added.

“I don’t really have a time for it,” he said. “I usually try to find periods where I can just play and enjoy it. When I say I’m bored or I need to stop, I stop. But sometimes I can just keep going forever.”

Charles Cross, who is part of the five-year MBA program, is a proud gamer.

He plays daily. If it’s a bad week, maybe once every other day.

He enjoys grand strategy games and some shooters, which means he prefers to be on a PC.

When he plays by himself, he plays for an hour or two.

But when playing with friends, it can stretch beyond five hours.

Irving Mejia, a communication major, is similar to Cross in terms of commitment: usually one time per day.

If he’s really bored at the dorm, it may turn into two to three times per day.

Mejia said that when it comes to games, he is all over the place.

He really likes old school stuff such as NES and Sega Genesis games.

With more modern stuff, he plays a lot of Grand Theft Auto and 2K.

With friends, the games can go a long time.

“If we are playing something like Smash or Brawlhalla, that goes on for God knows how long – like four hours of tournaments and singles,” he said. “Teams and stock can go up to ten.”