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Video games make you feel better about our economy's death spiral

Video games are a better value than going to the movies.

With the financial markets still reeling, Americans are looking for distraction. says that movies have often filled the void left by rough economic times, but these days video games are taking the pain out of all of our money going down the drain.

And video games are a better investment than movies, lasting longer and providing more hours of entertainment. In fact, video games are probably a better investment than a house or stocks at this point.

Now, nearly 80 years later, Americans looking for a cheap way to distract themselves from tough times aren't turning to theaters. Though movie revenues are up slightly, the number of movie tickets sold has remained fairly constant for the past decade.

By comparison, overall video game sales are up 43 percent from this time in 2007. Since its release on Aug. 12, fans have purchased more than 2 million copies of the football game Madden NFL 09, according to the National Purchase Diary (NPD) Group.

David Riley of the NPD Group says part of the reason video game sales are rising and movie ticket sales aren't is that a movie only lasts a couple of hours -- it gives you less "bang for your buck."

Since most people affected by the economic downturn already have computers, this makes a good bit of sense. But, I don't know that those really suffering are going to go out and buy an Xbox, even with the reduced price.