Video game critics love to point out the negative effects associated with the games, such as their addictive nature and reported link to violence. However, despite the constant bad rap the 100-billion-dollar industry gets, there’s now some good news for gamers: playing may help keep your brain healthy.
If you're looking to keep your mind sharp when you're a bit older in age, it looks like playing some Super Mario 64 could do the trick. According to a small study published in the journal PLOS ONE, researchers found that older adults who played Super Mario 64 had more gray matter within their hippocampus. This is an important region of the brain associated with memory.
The study involved patients who played Super Mario 64, others who played piano, and a group which did neither. The results showed those who played Super Mario 64 had an increased amount of gray matter in two regions of the brain, but those who played the piano did not.