COMMENT: At least city gaming contest gets them out of the house

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Remember those long summer holidays of days gone by, when you'd be off out on your bike with your mates or kicking a ball around until it was time for tea?

Back then it was a case of making your own entertainment as you broke free from the confines of the classroom and made the most of those weeks of sunny weather to meet up and explore the great outdoors.

How times have changed. Today’s kids are more likely to be sat inside glued to a screen than feeling the sunshine on their faces as the craze for video gaming shows no signs of slowing down.

Of course parents will do their best to get their children to leave their bedrooms and venture out into the big, wide world. 

But the reality is that unless the wifi is cut off or controllers are hidden, gamers will become absorbed for hours on end and only emerge blinking into the light for the occasional drink and snack.

We may yearn for a return to the days when kids ventured beyond the front door and got involved in physical activities, but we all have to acccept that gaming is a big part of today’s youth culture.

So Game in Portsmouth’s Commercial Road is only answering a need by staging a variety of video game competitions in the city for 13 to 16-year-olds during the summer holidays.

Some parents may groan, but at least it means gamers will actually leave the house and socialise as they play popular games such as Fortnite, Fifa19, Overwatch and Crash Team Racing, fighting it out for the title of Portsmouth’s top gamer and prizes of gaming equipment.

Plus, assistant manager Cameron Knowles has a point when he says: ‘It gives children the competition that they crave; some people aren’t into sports at school but want a way to compete in something, so this is perfect for them.’

Let battle commence...