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Linguaholic

Learning through gaming


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I'm very much into gaming, more boargaming than videogaming these days, and often felt this might be a fun way to grasp some concepts and vocabulary in other languages. I especially remember learning quite a lot of English vocabulary from videogames during my childhood. These days I find I'm picking some German from boardgames!

Anyway, these are more a case of learning by inevitable contact with the language, a positive side-effect. But there are severall games out there, especially boardgames, whose main game working mechanic is language. Scrabble is by far the most well known, but it's not the only one and, in my opinion, certainly not the best. Games like Apples to Apples, Say Anything!, Dixit!, Once Upon a Time, Unspeakable Words, and even Cards Against Humanity are great to learn new vocabulary, practice phrase construction, and obvioulsly speaking, since they all involve social interaction. Because most of them are only available in English, non-English speakers really develop their language skills playing these games (something I've witnessed in my gaming group).

Do you have any experience with learning through gaming? Do you think there is any validity in this method, or does the fun much outweigh, even overshadow the learning bit?

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I think games are helpful if you want to learn some vocabulary words, that's what I see unless the games can't each you to learn the language. I often learn new words from some of the games I play, which only help me to some extent. I still consider learning through gaming is just a fun way to learn the language.

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I'm very much into gaming, more boargaming than videogaming these days, and often felt this might be a fun way to grasp some concepts and vocabulary in other languages. I especially remember learning quite a lot of English vocabulary from videogames during my childhood. These days I find I'm picking some German from boardgames!

Anyway, these are more a case of learning by inevitable contact with the language, a positive side-effect. But there are severall games out there, especially boardgames, whose main game working mechanic is language. Scrabble is by far the most well known, but it's not the only one and, in my opinion, certainly not the best. Games like Apples to Apples, Say Anything!, Dixit!, Once Upon a Time, Unspeakable Words, and even Cards Against Humanity are great to learn new vocabulary, practice phrase construction, and obvioulsly speaking, since they all involve social interaction. Because most of them are only available in English, non-English speakers really develop their language skills playing these games (something I've witnessed in my gaming group).

Do you have any experience with learning through gaming? Do you think there is any validity in this method, or does the fun much outweigh, even overshadow the learning bit?

Learning through gaming is awesome and fun...especially when you have the narrative as an audible voice. I've not been giving most of my time to it, and thus there is an inconsistency in my learning of this foreign language.

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Your post recalled me how to learn languages playing video games, which was what my sister used to say to get my father buying them a PlayStation game 3 times a week.

Yes, many of these games had English dialogues in a given sequence, as in example Silent Hill 1, but it was very funny because sometimes my father used to buy a game for her and that game was so new that was not yet translated and displayed the dialogues in Japanese that nobody at home could understand.

However my sister used to say my dad, "oh, yes, this game taught me loads of new words" and that was not real  :laugh:

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Games like Scrabble and Text Twist can help increase your vocabulary, but I don't think that it can help you to learn a new language. The only time that it can is when you downloaded a foreign language of a game and you're forced to use Google Translate to be able to know the commands for that game. And that happened to me twice. The game was in Spanish and the other game I discarded, because it was written in symbols instead of words.

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  • 2 months later...

I'd love it if I knew of some games that could teach me Spanish, even if it was only vocabulary. However, I've never come across any that have kept my interest. I haven't looked THAT hard though because I just don't have the internet capabilities to play online games.

If learning is fun, it's so much easier to retain the information. I'm doing alright with duolingo, however, I'm going to have to keep reviewing a lot of problem areas. I had a lot of trouble with Modifiers yesterday. Couldn't remember what some of the less common words meant for the life of me.

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I played scrabble a lot when I was younger and I attribute a good amount of my vocabulary to it. I think it helps with remembering certain words because having them used as tools to help you win or even when the words are used to beat you, just makes the word/s stick a lot better to your mind instead of just reading them and instantly forgetting about them the next day.

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Actually, I don't think you can learn a language from gaming. When I was an avid gamer a long time ago [5 or so years ago] I played some "non-English" games and I couldn't even figure out what which menu button stood for what. It was only through trial and error that I would get the game going. . .so unless you already know the language, games won't help.

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Im also trying this one!

I love Japanese games and that's one of the reason why I want to learn the language. I import 3 Japanese games last week and Im still waiting for them. My plan is to play the game with a translation guide online.

It wont teach you the whole language but it will teach you some words that you can use while youre studying the language.

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I think that some games are very helpful in expanding the vocabulary. I have learned a lot of new words from the hidden objects games and I still do, so yes, definitely very helpful.

I know for a fact that games are very helpful. Educational games are designed with educational purpose especially for a secondary educational value. These games are designed to teach people about certain subjects, expand concepts, reinforce development, understanding a historical even or culture or assist us in learning a skill as we play. These games are inclusive of board, cards and video games. With the increase of technology devices, there is a shift in board and card games. Video or electronic games has become more widely used in these days.

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This is actually a really good idea! I reckon you'd need a certain level of competence in the target language first, or you'd be lost - but for those that can more or less hold a conversation, it'd be great to expand knowledge of idioms and phrases, and to see how speakers of other languages go about thinking about certain topics. And it would definitely be memorable.

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You might pick up a couple of new words here and there from playing games, but I doubt most people play games to learn a language. Of course, there are games like Scrabble which are designed specifically for that purpose, but in the end I think you'll benefit more from sources such as books.

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It's a very reliable method. This is how I've learned the basics of English. However, you must play singe player games that have a story line. Remember though, you can't learn the entire language only by playing video games.

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Yea. I use to play Scrabble a lot, but i don't think learning a language through gaming is a good idea. It seems like a conflict of interest. in order to learn the brain needs to be in a learning environment. Otherwise you will not retain the lesson. Gaming would only serve as a distraction to the actual learning.

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