It has become obvious to almost every parent today that video games in one form or another are ruling the games industry. After PC games came console games, and now you also have downloadable gaming apps for tablets and smartphones. So how can regular board games, action figures, and other toys compete with the video game industry? The revenue for video games worldwide has exceeded $101 billion according to Statista.com.
But there are still numerous online shopping sites that still offer sizable selections for traditional toys and games. This is especially true for toys designed for younger kids, as play mats and go-kart variants are still very popular.
There are many good reasons to stick with real (physical) toys and games instead of going with digital entertainment for your children, as shown below:
- Real toys can develop your child’s motor skills. This is especially true for trikes and karts, which they can ride for many hours so they can learn to pedal and to steer. This can help them develop better, and they also get used to physical activity that should keep them more fit as they grow up.
Some guys that involve drawing or handling small pieces help develop fine motor skills. Children also even move more when they’re playing a board game than when they’re playing a video game. With video games, usually the best you can hope for is improved hand eye coordination.
- Real toys can help teach social skills. Children can play with other kids or with their parents, and they learn how to interact properly. They learn about taking turns and about following the rules. They talk to other people and communicate through speech, facial expressions, and gestures.
With video games, such social interactions are limited. They can play with others even when they’re not in the same room. And their vocabulary is limited to game-specific language, and not language that are more likely to be used in actual conversations in the real world.
- Real toys can offer unlimited possibilities and scenarios. Consider a simple action figure or doll. With such a toy a child can use his imagination and spin a story about any sort of adventure they can think of. When they play with their parents or with other children, they can collaborate on the story and imagine rich storylines and scenarios that they thought of entirely by themselves.
That’s not exactly the case with video games. The child is constrained to what the programmer offers within the parameters of the game. It’s not possible to change in midcourse, unlike with real toys that boys and girls can use in ways other than the original intent
There’s no doubt that traditional toys aren’t as popular as they once were. A 2014 article in The New Yorker noted that traditional toys and games companies like Hasbro and Mattel aren’t doing all that well nowadays. But if parents, relatives and other adults persist in buying old-fashioned toys for children, there’s always a chance to keep the hope alive that children won’t totally turn to digital toys when they want to play.