How gamers develop real and lasting friendships from online connections

Gaming isn't just about advancing to the next round of the video game being played. It's also a time to catch up with friends.

"I personally prefer talking to friends online with [the video game] Destiny," Kenneth Cardez said. "I got guys in the military, I got guys in California, Hawaii, that we all meet up and hang out. That's how we hang out."

Waypoint Cafe on the Lower East Side is a spot where gamers, like Cardez and Sharrod Ford, can meet up with friends, virtually.

"The social interaction now has turned into us meeting online instead of meeting at the basketball court," Ford said.

By day, Ford is an algebra teacher. By night, he can be found catching up with his boys, old and new.

"Then the circles get larger because people join that you never met before and then all of a sudden they're your friends, too. I've actually visited people who I didn't know before the game," Ford said. "And then now I'm staying at their houses, hanging out with them."

Dr. Jephtha Tausig, a clinical psychologist, said she sees the gaming world as a new-age way to bond with others.

"It essentially provides a social forum for people to get together and interact who otherwise might not ever have known each other or met," Tausig said.

Which is what happened with Ryan Battle, the manager of Waypoint Café, and the woman who would become his girlfriend.

"I did meet one of her relatives while playing a game. I found out he lived in the Bronx, so I lived in New York," Battle said. "And when I went to go meet him in person, he brought her with him."

So gaming love?

"So technically, yes," Battle said. "It's true."