Daniel Christensen Posted 6 months ago Community Organization and Impact in Online Games "It uncovers persona, for better or worse, it can test personality under pressure, introduce people to challenge, and build character." Not only do you provide testimony as an example, but that description is the perfect way to describe the backbone behind the effort. You can always develop something incorrectly, hence the "hostile, unforgiving... and offensive" communities you explained. But if used correctly, the impact can be real. I couldn't have said it better. Everyone wants to win, and therefore whenever you play a game to win, a lot of your actions, down to the smallest detail, have significance. This is a little different from reality, where individuals don't see every single minute detail of their activities with too much pressure or stress. In a video game, all of your actions in real-time are meaningful, based on how badly you want to win. Because you invest value, you naturally analyze your actions more, and improvements are made (at least, that's the typical way people respond to a negative outcome within gameplay). This dynamic can apply to not hitting your target in a shooter game, using a poor strategy in any RTS, or being a jerk to your teammates, which might keep you from winning the game. In short, because you care about the game, you care more about your actions. You realize things about yourself, and as a result you improve (hopefully). This is my belief on what gets people out of their shell, what influences people to become more social, and what can make people feel more empowered in every day life.