According to a study done at the University Of Calgary and published in the journal Computers In Human Behavior, playing video games can improve you navigational skills.
The study asked 123 students about their gaming habits. They ranged from avid gamers to people who had never picked up a controller. For those who did play video games, they asked them what genres they played most often. The researchers had them play a game in which they explored the rooms of a virtual museum, then had to go through the museum to retrieve a series of letters. The reasearchers scored them based on how long they took, then asked them about how they navigated the museum.
It turns out that fans of games that involve a lot of navigation, like first-person shooters and open world sandbox games, did better, on average, than everyone else. While this isn’t definitive proof that gaming improves your navigational ability—it could also be that people with better navigational skills are drawn to those games—it does add to a growing body of evidence that suggests that gaming is actually good for your brain. (Much to the dismay of thousands of parents from the ’80s and ’90s, who insisted that they would “turn your brain to Jell-O.”)
Read more about the study at The Daily Dot.