Which Video Games Might Hackers Play To Improve Their Skills?

Depending on how old you are, your thoughts on video games may be different than the others around you. If you are older than 40, then you may have grew up in a time when video games were made for young kids and something that only geeks took part in. But if you are a person that is under 40, then you grew up in an era where everyone played video games and there is a good chance that a lot of your friends still do.

This is a big reason why video games still have a large influence in our lives. For people under 40 that have played them for so long, it is almost like your favorite TV show or movie having a huge influence on you. No matter how much we might say that we ignore media influences it does have an affect, even if it is a small one.


One thing that we like to do, especially with modern video games, is practice on them to see if they make us better. If you play American football then you might play Madden so that you can practice plays. This is the same thing with basketball. If you play basketball then you might go out and purchase 2k11 so that you can practice plays on there as well. There are even reports that soldiers in the field play first person shooters so that they can prepare themselves for real battle in the field. So the question is, which games might hackers play to practice in their endeavors? We will take a look at some of them and maybe you can think of some of your own.


When you talk to a lot of hackers you will find that they like a lot of RPG’s. That of course means Role Playing Games (my addiction to Oblivion, Mass Effect 2, Fallout 3, Fallout New Vegas and Dragon Age Origins is purely coincidental!). They like these types of games because they can be filled with action but also at the same time make you have to think out a strategy to win. Most actions games are considered button mashers. This means that you do not have to think about what you are doing, just quickly mash the buttons and you will win.

Starcraft is the perfect antidote for that type of game play. For the last ten years this game has hooked a lot of people in the computer industry. As I said earlier, it gives you just the right amount of action as well as having to lay down a strategy. This game is very popular in tech orientated places such as South Korea and in Japan. Many hackers find that the game is able to help their cognitive thinking skills when they are in the middle of figuring out a hack. They are able to plan out how they are going to attack it in a short amount of time. There is a second version of the game out now and it has the same results as well. This second version is bringing in a whole new generation of hackers because of the same reasons mentioned earlier.


Another game that will help you with your hacking skills is Poker. Some people might see this as a stretch but it really is not. It is not a coincidence that, again, many people who are programmers or hackers also play a lot of online poker. The one thing about Poker is that you have to develop a skill to be able to “read” the other player. Even when you play online this is true. In real life, you read the other person by looking at their face. Or you take a look at any sudden movements that they do. In online poker, it may take a little bit of a different skill set but you read people on there as well. You see how they bet, how long it takes them to call, and when they fold. You use these patterns to be able to read your opponent.

This is the same set of skills that are going to help a hacker in the field. You have to be able to study your target as well. So there are several things that you are going to need to know when you are on the attack. You need to know when your target is most active online, what sites they go to, who accesses their networks and things of that nature. Just like in poker, you have to know your target to be able to attack them. If you do not then you are just taking a shot in the dark.

These are only two games in a long line of video games that influence hackers in their everyday activities. Just like movies or TV can be an inspiration, video games can be as well. Depending on the person, there is a whole host of things that can help the person achieve their goals. But no matter how much you play these games, you are still going to have to work at the basics.

About Lee Munson

Lee's non-technical background allows him to write about internet security in a clear way that is understandable to both IT professionals and people just like you who need simple answers to your security questions.


    It’s RTS (RealTime Strategy) not RPG (Role Playing Games) 🙂


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