Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Keep The Kids Away From Tetris

The PAX East review is almost done. I just need to upload the rest of the photos from my camera before I can post it. So we have more gaming news from around the web!

Violent Video Games Won't Make You Aggressive (but Tetris might).

Darn you newspapers and your catchy headlines. Of course I clicked on it! A study from the University of Oxford, the University of Rochester, and the company Immersyve found that aggressive thoughts and actions don't come from violent games, rather it's playing difficult games or being bad at playing a game is more likely to cause the temporary change in behavior. That makes way more sense then any other study out there and can easily be applied to more then just video games. Think about a sport you have played, or a board game. When you're loosing, you tend to get frustrated, less in control of your actions, and it can lead to you lashing out in bouts of anger.

What made this study different from others is that the researchers didn't approach the topic as if the games were movies, i.e. Call of Duty is violent but Imagine Fashion is not (they do this with movies all the time when doing comparison research). Instead, they focused on how well a person did in a game, how they reacted to higher difficulties and lower scores. This seems so common sense to us, a game of Pictionary can turn crazy after a few rounds, but it's easily overlooked because we try to grasp for difficult explanations. For some reason we don't want there to be simple answers to complex problems. It's okay for things to be simple.

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