From the early ages of life, humans like other animals played games with each other. Humans played games to relax, build social bonds, increase social status, develop skills and dominance and so on. Since humans have higher brain power than other animals, man kind developed these playing habits into organized games.
After the development of the computer, some developers saw the potential of developing games as a means of entertainment. Soon computer games evolved and software companies started to develop games. At first critics used to say that computer games did not do any good to humans. They went as far as saying that computer games promote violence and made children neglect more "important" work. This was not a totally false accusation, but like many stories there are two sides to this story as well.
The first computer games came out as pure sources of entertainment. Needless to say the early computer game did not have the class, elegance or technology of today's computer games. But still it was a big hit amongst users because at this time the computer was nothing more than a "dumb machine" which had to be given a lot of commands to get a task completed. So when the early computer games came out it was a source of relaxation and entertainment for professionals who used computers. Unlike today at that time not every household had a computer and computers were used only in universities and major organizations.
But as time went on and with the introduction of home computers (also known as personal computers) games developed dramatically in proportion and color. Now computer games not only promote entertainment but skill. Take for example strategic games, the player must have sense of every thing that is going on within the game in order to win the game. Balancing resources, developing a city, maintaining alliances and defending the city against enemy attack are some of the tasks which the user will have to concentrate on. This helps the user in real life as well, by teaching him/her how to balance their own life and reach their goals. Other games help to develop the mind of people and to sharpen the senses. Computer games also helps them to make quick decisions. Some games help the user to think as we say "outside the box" and be creative. With years past there is one other very important thing that computer games have not failed to do, that is to entertain million of human beings around the world.
There are down sides to computer games as well. There are games which are pretty violent and do not help the cause of learning something new or to relax the mind in any way. This is of course expected, because like every thing in this world there is a down side to all good things. So it is up to the player, parent or guardian to select the proper games to play which by experience many would say will take you for a ride like no other.