A team of psychologists found no difference in levels of aggression in players exposed for two months to a violent video game, GTA 5, during a recent experimental study. This is the conclusion of the study which was published one week after Donald Trump summoned representatives of the video game industry, disputing the influence of violent video games on players’ level of aggression.
77 gamers were analyzed during 2 months
Under the supervision of Simone Kuhn, Associate Professor of Psychology at the Max-Planck Society for the Development of Science in Germany, the experiment brought together 77 gamer for two months.
The participants were divided into three groups, as follows:
- The 1st group played a violent video game, the blockbuster GTA 5;
- The 2nd group played a peaceful video game, The Sims 3;
- The 3rd group did not play any game;
The authors of the study evaluated participants’ level of aggression and empathy, interpersonal skills, impulsiveness, anxiety, mood, and self-control through questionnaires and computer-based behavioral assessment.
“The researchers found no significant change in any of the observed variables, and especially not in the change in the level of aggression of any of the three groups,” the study’s report stipulates.
The recent study contradicts the American Psychological Association beliefs
Of the total of 208 statistical tests conducted during this recent experiment, only three peaks of violent behavior were observed, and can’t be explained by the games played, the study’s authors said.
“The American Psychological Association recently summarized previous discoveries about violent video games as indicating a risk in relation to others, including increased level of aggression and decreased empathy. This study clearly contradicts this conclusion,” said Simone Kuhn, the leading author of the new study.
The supposed effects of video games on the gamers have been the subject of recurrent debate since the late 1990s in the media, politics, and universities research. However, the influence of the games on aggressiveness has never been proven.
On the other hand, the recent study shows the contrary, namely, the violent video games, such as GTA 5 which has been used in the experiment, are not increasing the gamers’ level of aggression.