89-Year-Old Grandma Says Video Games Keep Her Mind Sharp

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This is Hamako Mori. At 89, she’s not new to video games. She has been playing them for nearly four decades.

In an interview with GameSpark, the Tokyo native says the first console she played was the Cassette Vision, which was released in 1981. After that, she was into the Famicom and played The Legend of Zelda and Dragon Quest. She continued gaming through the years that followed.

For the past few years, Mori has been uploading clips to YouTube. Previously, Mori had watched other Let’s Plays and decided to start uploading her own clips.

“The graphics for the recent games are truly amazing,” she said. “I think it’s truly wonderful to have lived this long.”

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“As you get older, I recommend single-player games over multiplayer,” she said. “Inevitably, if you’re on the battlefield with younger players, you’ll slow them down... But, I think as the number of elderly players increases, there will be dedicated servers where that won’t be a concern.”

The gaming granny is looking forward to the next Grand Theft Auto and Elder Scrolls.

“If you play video games, you don’t get dementia,” she told GameSpark, adding that her biggest piece of advice is to start playing video games when you’re young.

“If you are into fashion or playing sports, there comes a time when you cannot continue those hobbies.” The same isn’t true for games, Mori believes. “Even as you get older, it’s wonderful to keep gaming.”

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About the author

Brian Ashcraft

Originally from Texas, Ashcraft has called Osaka home since 2001. He has authored five books, including most recently, Japanese Whisky: The Ultimate Guide to the World's Most Desirable Spirit.