5 games that can get you motion sick

Motion sick­ness is a con­di­tion that can occur when you’re mov­ing, but your brain does­n’t feel like you are. For exam­ple, if you’re on a boat and look­ing at the hori­zon while the water moves around you, it’s easy to get sick because your body thinks it’s mov­ing even though the boat isn’t actu­al­ly going anywhere.

Motion sick­ness affects gamers in dif­fer­ent ways depend­ing on what type of game they’re play­ing and how much move­ment there is in that par­tic­u­lar game. Some peo­ple are more sus­cep­ti­ble than oth­ers because they have an inner ear prob­lem or sen­si­tiv­i­ty to cer­tain types of move­ments or visu­als (like flash­ing lights).

Game 1: First-Person Shooters

First-per­son shoot­ers are a genre of games that can cause motion sick­ness. The rea­son for this is because you’re look­ing through the eyes of your char­ac­ter, rather than see­ing things from a third-per­son per­spec­tive. This means that when your char­ac­ter moves around or turns their head, so do you–and this can make some peo­ple feel nau­seous after only a short peri­od of time play­ing these types of games.
If you find your­self get­ting sick while play­ing first-per­son shoot­ers, there are sev­er­al ways to avoid feel­ing ill:

  • Take breaks dur­ing game­play when­ev­er pos­si­ble! When we play video games for hours on end with­out tak­ing breaks (or eat­ing), our bod­ies get tired and stressed out which makes us more like­ly to expe­ri­ence motion sick­ness symp­toms like headaches or dizzi­ness because our brains aren’t get­ting enough oxy­gen due to lack­adaisi­cal breath­ing pat­terns caused by sit­ting still for too long in one place with­out mov­ing around much at all.*

Game 2: Racing Games

Rac­ing games are a com­mon source of motion sick­ness, espe­cial­ly if they’re played in first-per­son view. In this type of game, you’ll be sit­ting in the dri­ver’s seat and con­trol­ling the vehi­cle with your hands (or some­times feet). The prob­lem is that even though you feel like you’re mov­ing around in real life, your brain does­n’t know that it’s just an illu­sion cre­at­ed by soft­ware. This dis­con­nect can cause some peo­ple to feel nau­seous or dizzy after play­ing rac­ing games for a while.
If you want to avoid get­ting sick from play­ing rac­ing games:

  • Don’t play them if there’s any chance at all that some­one else will make fun of how much they make you throw up!
  • Try turn­ing off any visu­al effects such as blur or bloom when play­ing on con­sole sys­tems; these effects can also con­tribute sig­nif­i­cant­ly towards mak­ing play­ers feel like they’re mov­ing faster than they actu­al­ly are — which could lead them into think­ing their bod­ies aren’t keep­ing up with what’s hap­pen­ing on screen (and thus caus­ing nausea).

Game 3: Virtual Reality Games

Vir­tu­al real­i­ty games are a great way to get your gam­ing fix. How­ev­er, if you’re prone to motion sick­ness, VR can be a night­mare. The immer­sive nature of vir­tu­al real­i­ty means that it’s easy for your brain to con­fuse what’s real and what isn’t–and that can lead to some seri­ous dis­com­fort.
Accord­ing­ly, here are some tips for avoid­ing motion sick­ness when play­ing vir­tu­al real­i­ty games:

  • Don’t play for too long at once; take breaks between ses­sions if necessary
  • Avoid play­ing in high-inten­si­ty sit­u­a­tions (e.g., rac­ing) or with intense graphics

Game 4: Flight Simulators

Flight sim­u­la­tors are a great way to get your pilot’s license, but they can also be a source of motion sick­ness. The rea­son for this is that they use real-world physics and flight mechan­ics in order to sim­u­late fly­ing an actu­al plane. This means that when you turn or bank your plane, it will respond just like an actu­al air­craft would respond–and this includes feel­ing like you’re turn­ing or bank­ing too quick­ly for com­fort!
To avoid get­ting sick while play­ing these games:

  • Don’t play with the cam­era turned all the way up (if pos­si­ble). This will make it hard­er for your brain to dif­fer­en­ti­ate between what’s hap­pen­ing on screen and what’s hap­pen­ing in real life; there­fore, it will be eas­i­er for it to mis­take one for anoth­er if things get too intense.
  • Take breaks every hour or so (or when­ev­er need­ed). Your body needs time off from being immersed in vir­tu­al real­i­ty before becom­ing accli­mat­ed again; oth­er­wise, it may start feel­ing uncom­fort­able after extend­ed peri­ods of play­time with­out rest breaks between them

Game 5: Adventure Games

Adven­ture games are a great way to get lost in anoth­er world, but they can also cause motion sick­ness. If you’re prone to get­ting sick while play­ing video games, try these tips:

  • Take breaks between lev­els or mis­sions and walk around for a bit. You’ll be more like­ly to feel bet­ter if you give your body time to adjust between move­ments instead of mov­ing con­stant­ly through the game world.
  • Make sure that your con­troller is set up cor­rect­ly so that it’s easy for you to play with min­i­mal dis­com­fort or strain on any part of your body (such as hands or wrists). This will help keep things com­fort­able dur­ing those long gam­ing sessions!


Motion sick­ness is a com­mon prob­lem for many peo­ple when play­ing video games. This can be caused by a vari­ety of fac­tors, includ­ing the game’s cam­era move­ment or frame rate, as well as your own sen­si­tiv­i­ty to motion sick­ness.
If you are prone to get­ting sick while play­ing games, there are some things that may help reduce your symptoms:

  • Reduce the amount of time spent play­ing games if pos­si­ble (this is prob­a­bly eas­i­er said than done).
  • Take breaks between ses­sions where you’re not mov­ing around much or look­ing at screens.
  • Try play­ing in short­er ses­sions rather than long ones–this will allow more time between each ses­sion where you’re not look­ing at screens and/or mov­ing around much (such as sleeping).

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