Imagine today, you are the ruler of a grand civilization. Tomorrow, you will be a soldier fighting in a war. But you may take a break to train like a warrior and look for revenge on some villains.
All you require are some fun video games, and you can become anything you wish for.
Better yet, you can do it entirely while practising your English reading, listening, and speaking skills.
Through this blog, Ms Sonu Goel, Founder of Café Converse which is Delhi’s leading English Speaking Institute is telling you about some of the best video games for learning English while exploring new worlds. They include online games and puzzles developed for language learners, as well as authentic English video games that native speakers play.
So get that controller and start learning.
Why Use Video Games to Practice English
§ They are interactive: Contrary to videos or songs, your own actions impact the game in crucial ways. This active involvement lets you pay deeper attention to the material and understand it well.
§ They mimic real-life scenarios: Almost every game seeks to be a simulation. In other terms, every game attempt to imitate reality or make you feel that what is happening in the game is actually happening to you. This assists you practice your skills in an environment that is closer to daily life and makes familiar demands from you.
§ They are addictive: Since games invite you to act and then reward or punish you based on your decisions or action, they can rapidly become addictive. Certainly, if it gets out of control, it can be dangerous. But in moderation, games can transform boring language lessons into fun activities that you want to do daily.
§ You can opt for different responses in the same situation: The element of selection is one of the most essential features of any game. This is specifically true for in-game conversations where every decision you make alters the whole outcome. You can always start again and play the game differently to get several reactions and practice using various vocabulary.
§ You play at your own speed: Apart from some time-based games, most video games these days let you explore, absorb, and find out things at your own pace.
Here are some of the games that will help you to learn English without getting you bored.
Level: Beginner. | Genre: Gamified (changed into a game) language learning.
If you felt language learning can never be adventurous, then this game is just to prove you wrong.
In this game, you go around a modern apartment where everything is clickable. You use a device to scan things and it tells you the name of those things in English. The game features native audio pronunciations and tests your memory strength using time-based quizzes.
It also has a mini-game inside it where you can fly an airplane and shoot down several things.
You will get to see over 420 nouns, adjectives, and verbs to collect and learn besides a synonym feature. Since the setting is a normal house you can find in most English-speaking countries, it assists you to learn the names of objects used in regular life. Beginners can rapidly pick up the important words they will use in most contexts in a fun and easy way.
This will let you start conversing with native speakers and improve your speaking skills.
Clifford: Make a Word
Level: Beginner. | Genre: Puzzle.
In this simple puzzle game, you are given four incomplete words and you need to drag the five vowels to each word below to complete it. Your target is to make as many words as you can and complete the list on the right-hand side of the game. Each time you make a correct word, the game gives you its pronunciation.
A nice way to practice is by trying to repeat the word each time you get one right. In case you require to listen to a pronunciation again, you can get it in the list on the right and click it.
This game can be played either as a test or as a learning tool. If you are using it to increase your vocabulary, be certain to search for the definition of each word you complete. You can either use an online dictionary or you can merely type the word on Google followed by “definition” and it will automatically show you the meaning of the word.
Level: Beginner to intermediate | Genre: Role-playing.
The refugee crisis has become one of the key issues in world politics today. This game tries to make the player feel what a typical refugee has to go through each day. In this, you play as a Syrian refugee who is looking to survive in another land.
The game is short, which makes it suitable for English practice. It’s completely text-based, which means that it can only be played to improve your reading skills. The language is also informal and has some Arabic phrases added to it since you play as a Syrian. The sentence structures are very simple in the game and the dialogues are close to realistic, making it quite useful for beginners.
Level: Intermediate. | Genre: Role-playing, fantasy.
The game is for all those players who love fantasy and a good storyline. Like most Role-Playing Games (RPGs) today, it has a good element of choice and morality.
You play as a boy whose entire village is burned in an attack by bandits. Post the boy runs away to a warrior’s guild, he is trained to become a hero who has the job of defeating the villains in the region.
Throughout the game you can decide whether to do good deeds and whether to help people around you. Based on your decisions, your reputation and your character are formed from childhood.
This game is regarded as a classic. It aims at realism and each character on the street makes some comment or greets you, making you feel that you are in a real village. The voice acting is one of the top points of the game and is great for learning British English.
Civilization 4,5 and 6
Contrary to most of the other games on this list, you can play all Civilization games without speakers or audio. The text is not an important part of the game and can be completely ignored. But considering the amount of content, there is to read and listen to, it’s really amazing that those portions are in plenty in the game.
In each “Civilization” game you are the ruler of a civilization who has to compete with others around the world. You begin from the Stone Age and then reach the present times in terms of technology and science. You have to develop your city, build relationships with foreign countries, form an army, spy on your rivals, and also make a spaceship before anyone else.
Whenever you find new technology, a screen pops up with a quote, and plenty of information about what it lets you do and even it is actual history. You can also make famous monuments such as Stonehenge, Taj Mahal and you will get its historical background as well.
This game is certainly more suitable for reading than listening even though there are some voices playback, there are no in-depth conversations between characters.
Prior choosing any game be certain to watch a “gameplay” video online so that you know what sort of English is used in it and how. Once you think that it is going to help you understand English better, only then you should start playing it. Almost every game mentioned here takes some time to complete, so be certain to choose the most appropriate one according to your learning level
Happy Learning !!
Ms Sonu Goel is a professionally acclaimed certified ESL trainer from British Council having 15 years of strong background for teaching English language in both online and physical classes. She is dedicated to the teaching of English in an interactive and practical way, whereby learners feel enriched with knowledge and experience the language hands-on. She uses creative ideas and aids to let the learning happen as organically and efficiently as possible. Ms Goel has travelled various European countries and experienced an array of cultures and linguistic skills for the English language.