For years, the video game industry has had to face voices that say they are a means of entertainment that has a negative impact on those who consume it. If you know someone who thinks this way, it’s time to talk to them and tell them that recent studies have ruled out that violent video games negatively change the behavior of their players.
The study we talked about was recently published in Molecular Psychiatry and was done by the Hamburg-Eppendorf Clinical University Germany and the Max Planck Institute for Human Development. In it, they looked for the long-term effects of the use of video games when using 90 adults who played Grand Theft Auto V or The Sims 3 at least 30 minutes to the day during 8 weeks.
In addition, they put together another group of adults who had no contact with video games for the same period of time. It is important to note that all participants were between 18 and 45 years old and all were individuals who had played few video games during the 6 months prior to the study.
Before and after the weeks of contact with the video games, the participants resolved questionnaires with the objective of measuring their “aggression, se*ist attitudes, empathy, and interpersonal competencies, impulsivity-related constructs, mental health as well as executive control functions.” This resulted in 208 statistical tests that scientists used to compare and find some kind of correlation between violence and video games.
In the end, those responsible for the study found that only 3 of the 208 tests showed an interaction pattern that indicates that video games have some impact on the behavior of their players. That is why they discard that violent video games have a long-term influence on those who play them.
“We did not find relevant negative effects in response to violent video game playing. In fact, only three tests of the 208 statistical tests performed showed a significant interaction pattern that would be in line with this hypothesis. Since at least ten significant effects would be expected purely by chance, we conclude that there were no detrimental effects of violent video gameplay,” the study notes.
In recent weeks, video games have been used as a scapegoat after the recent violent acts in the United States. Even Donald Trump, the president of that country, pointed out that some type of classification system had to be implemented since violent video games shape the minds of young people. However, this and other studies have ruled out any correlation between video games and violence.