There are many theories about why videogames are so succesful, and it’s no wonder. Nowadays videogames industry is richer than movies, and their users went from being a bunch of “geeks” to pretty much everyone. I’m not trying to do any serious investigation in this post, I’ll just explain the two main reasons why, in my opinion, people like videogames so much.
1. Everything depends on you.
There are many things that don’t depend on you in real life. Yes, your choices have a great influence on the way your life goes, but as Woody Allen said over and over when he was promoting “Match Point”, luck plays a very important role. Luck, and people around you (and their choices). Luck is not that important in videogames. As a general rule, the better player will always win. And being the better player depends on how much you play and how much time you spend learning about the game and its mechanics. If you learn more, you play better. If you play better, you get a better result. Just like that.
2. Difficulty can be adjusted, so that it’s alwasy the right one.
You can start playing at the lowest level, and then go up to make it more interesting. Or you can play a puzzle game that starts being very easy, but gets more and more complicated as you go on. In any case, the difficulty level will always be high enough for you not to get bored, but not so much that the game gets frustrating. This is a great advantadge compared to real life, in which a certain objective can be so difficult that it seems impossible to reach.
As you can see, I picked aspects of videogames in which they look more atractive than real life. There are more, of course (action in a controlled environment, surprises and emotions within your everyday life…), but these are the two main reasons, in my opinion, why videogames are so good to make us “rest” from real world. They have exactly what we miss in reality.