Games are defined as structured types of play that are normally associated with pleasure and enjoyment. They may serve an educational purpose as well, since the human mind can acquire skills easier if they are linked to pleasurable activities.
Games are usually viewed in contrast to work, which is an activity carried out for remuneration and typically involving a high level of responsibility. However, playing games can also become a source of income for certain individuals, such as professional players and athletes.
Since playing has been studied in numerous species of animals and identified as an integral part of their development, games are also considered to be intrinsic to human experience and can be observed across all cultures and civilizations. The earliest attested board games date back to around 3000 BC and were discovered in present-day Iraq and Egypt.
Many types of games are popular today, including sports, card games, board games, pen and paper games, dice games, as well as the more recently developed video games. With the spread of internet access, numerous free online games have been developed to offer internet users a simple recreational activity. Various gambling games such as slot machine games like Vulcan video slot games are easily found online.
New games serving as a form of online social interaction have become an appealing alternative to traditional single player campaigns. Games that engage hundreds of thousands of players in vast virtual universes are known as MMOGs, or massively multiplayer online games. First person shooter games enable players to form teams, devise strategies, battle each other and compete for resources. Such games are considered fairly serious and geared toward more mature players, as they require a lot of skill and coordination on the players’ part.
Another popular type of online game is the browser game, which uses the web browser as a client. While most developers initially offered only single player browser games, with the possibility of comparing one’s results to the high scores of other players, more complex, recently developed games now also provide multiplayer campaigns. Bingo Hollywood is a hugely popular online gaming and socializing site, that allows people to play with strangers, as well as connect via twitter or facebook.
Social network games are a notable internet phenomenon in that they allow members of a social network to play together in an asynchronous fashion. They are typically implemented as browser games, but can also be accessed from mobile devices. Social network games are currently among the most popular free online games in the world, with some counting tens of millions of players.
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