Media can promote arousal states along a spectrum from low, boredom and relaxedness, to high, anxiety and excitement. In Mood Management Theory this is referred to as the excitatory potential. Designing for an optimum arousal intensity can make a piece of media helpful in repairing a consumer's mood, but pushing too far in either direction can unintentionally promote moods that consumers would like to avoid.
A player who is in a state of low arousal may choose to play a game to achieve higher arousal and player who is in a state of high arousal may choose to pick up a game to achieve lower arousal. It is a good idea for game designers to keep this fact in mind as they create their game.
World of Warcraft offers a range of arousal levels that is wider than most games. The core loop of combat usually provides a relatively high level of arousal that is positively charged. Exploration of the world supports this excitement and inspires Curiosity. This combat can also bore the player, when battles are fought to grind for experience or loot, or stress the player, when battles are fought within a raid and failure means the loss of hours of work. Even players looking for a positive, low arousal experience can find it while developing crafting skills.
Super Smash Bros. Melee is a party-fighting game that uses quick action, weighty animations, and support for multiple players to project a high excitatory potential. At almost all levels of play, this game supports a high arousal level.
This is an industry standard and is empirically validated
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Zillmann, D. (1988a). Mood management through communication choices. Am. Behav. Sci. 31, 327–341.