Leading the charge in using games to up their game are soccer players, many of whom now carefully study the FIFA series to get an edge. The super realistic soccer game has carefully measured stats on all of the professional athletes, much like an RPG, giving remarkably solid data on all the real players' strengths and weaknesses. When young Arsenal striker Alex Iwobi started out, he would carefully study these stats to learn everything he needed about rival players he hadn't soccered against yet. (Are we using that word correctly?) There's no better motivation than finding out you're classified as one of the easy mini-bosses:
And there's another benefit soccer games can give the real players: perspective. No, not about how humbled they should be for achieving such fame and fortune at a young age, but literal perspective. According to LA Galaxy's Zlatan Ibrahimovic, as a young buck he'd "often spot solutions in the games that [he] then parlayed into real life." Not only can games give players a better overview of their sport, but it even allows them to role-play as other players. This trick works especially well when they're emulating their idols, like how Iwobi would practice in real life all the tricks the video game version of Brazilian soccer superstar Ronaldinho would pull. Doing so made him better. Yes, he used a video game to level up in real life.