A game is basically a structured form of playful play, often undertaken for fun or entertainment, and at times used as an educational instrument. Games are very different from homework, which traditionally is done for monetary gain, and from painting, which is often more of an expression of philosophical or aesthetic themes. In the latter cases, the activity of painting requires extensive planning, from selecting the colors and types of paint, to arranging the tools and preparing the canvas. A game on the other hand involves a simple application of skills learned in a course, which may be computer-based or otherwise.
Video games nowadays contain a wide variety of different types of mechanics, themes and storyline. As mentioned, there are those that are primarily used for entertainment and some that can be used for education. The first category, the ones intended for amusement, usually involve action, sports, adventure, horror and many other types of games that appeal to the senses of all ages. The second category, the ones that are designed for education, are typically educational video games that teach different subjects such as mathematics, reading and English grammar. Educational video games that are based on different genres of media, such as adventure, strategy and role playing are also common.
Adventure games, especially the modern ones, are popular among young and old alike. In this type of game, players have to navigate a virtual environment, seeking to solve puzzles or find a target through a variety of tools such as weapons, vehicles, allies and magical items. Different characters, special abilities and a variety of quests to further enhance the appeal of this genre. These video game mechanics often incorporate a story line, though this element varies depending on the specific game.
An action-adventure game is generally designed to thrill its players by presenting them with situations where overcoming challenges and overcoming odds are the only viable solution. Players take turns completing missions or pursuing the storyline, though the player interaction is minimal as the game progresses. Action-adventures normally follow a protagonist who struggles against perhaps insurmountable odds or faces an opponent who is equally challenging. Themes may include a hero struggling against a seemingly unbeatable opponent, a heroine facing down an evil organization or a secret agent whose job is to go into dangerous territory to find a captured agent.
Text-based adventure games are also very popular. In text adventure games, players will use a keyboard to guide their character through a text-based scenario. This allows for more precise movement, as well as greater freedom in creating strategies and planning out attacks and evasive maneuvers. Unlike action-adventures, text-based adventure games give players the opportunity to choose their own starting point and explore a fictional world, though often with limited interaction with other players.
Finally, some people enjoy playing online games that require little or no skill to play. idle games are available in many forms and genres, and a quick search on the Internet reveals a great deal about what is available on the market today. One of the most popular genres is the game where a player has a limited amount of time to complete a course, while fighting enemies and completing objectives along the way. A simple, yet addictive game mechanic is the ability to save a completed game at any point, so that players can return to previous levels if they wish to reattempt a mission or level if they are not happy with how it has progressed.