“Stop playing those violent video games! Those are the reason for the increased crime rates and violence nowadays!”
Some people including (but not limited to) parents, politicians, and some experts have been blaming video games for quite some time now.
These people strongly believe that video games (specifically the violent ones) are one of the reasons for the increased crime rates and incidents like mass shootings.
Is that really true? Let’s find out.
How many gamers are there in the world? 🌎
First, let’s take a quick look at how many gamers are there all over the world, to have a general idea of how big impact things can really be.
The statistic (2019) 📊
According to this source, there were 2.47 billion gamers by the end of 2019 globally.
Goodness, gracious, that’s ALOT.
The prediction is, that it might rise to 2.6 billion by 2020, based on a 5.22% year-on-year growth forecast.
Age groups (2019) 🔢
As you can see, not only the “young” people play video games, even the “baby boomers” want some digital entertainment for themselves once in a while.
Now that you have a general grasp of how big the gaming community really is, let’s move on to the main topic, and that is violence.
Video Games and Violence 💥
behavior involving physical force intended to hurt, damage, or kill someone or something.
What makes a video game violent? 🤨
The California law defines “violent video game” in 150 words as, in part, as “a video game in which the range of options available to a player includes killing, maiming, dismembering, or sexually assaulting an image of a human being.”
I personally didn’t know that sexual assault belongs to the subject of violence.
I thought that it belongs to a different subject (silly and uneducated me).
What percent of video games are violent? 🕹
Yes. You’ve read that right. Nine zero.
You know, this fact shocked even me, I expected the percentage to be much lower than that.
…violence is often portrayed as justified, fun, and without negative consequences,…Douglas Gentile and Craig Anderson, of Iowa State University.
It seems like many games secretly contain or portray violence in them, without us realizing.
Now that I think of it, most games today are actually violent, even “kid’s” games like Fortnite.
At first glance, it seems innocent and fun because of the art style and the bright colors, but when you look closely and think about it, it’s actually very violent.
The violence is further concealed by the absence of blood, which makes you think you are not doing something violent after all.
Cleverly done, if you’ll ask me. Even I was not aware of that (maybe I’m just too mindless, lol)
What is considered the most violent video game? 😲
The most violent video game ever, you ready to know which one is it?
Brace yourselves. It is…
Wikipedia says, “Manhunt 2 has been labeled as possibly the most violent video game ever made and is infamous for being one of only four video games
to have received an “Adults Only” rating due to violence, with the other three being The Punisher, Hatred, and Agony.”.
Manhunt 2, one of the only few games given the rating “Adults Only”. The game must really be very violent, huh?
Simply put, you are an escaped mental patient who has to do a mission and you basically kill people in horrendous,unspeakable ways while doing it. Sick, right?
Quick Question ❓
When watching or playing gory stuff, you also half-mortified but half-curious?
Like when the violent, scary scenes come, you cover your eyes with your hands because of the fear and grossness, but you still peek due to curiosity. Just me?
So, do video games cause violence? 🤔
As of now, there are still no hard facts proving that violent video games make people more violent.
Right now, the findings are currently mixed. Some studies “prove” that violent video games do cause an increased tendency of doing violent acts, while the other studies prove otherwise.
But, according to my research, more sources and experts say that video games DO NOT cause violence and it is not really the reason for incidents like mass shootings.
There seem to be more experts saying and agreeing that there are still no links between video games and violence.
Let’s be real 💯
Let’s be real, extremely violent games might probably encourage you to do violent things, but that does not necessarily mean that you will do it, right?
It is still up to you whether you would do that or not. Fortunately, most of us know that violence is probably never the right thing to do.
In the case of young children, it’s the parent’s responsibility to make sure they monitor what their child is exposed to and to counsel them, when necessary.
These days, maybe kids are indeed getting too much freedom browsing the internet, getting exposed to things they shouldn’t be exposed to, and their young minds might not fully understand them yet.
Thankfully, there are these parental control or kid safety apps you can use to monitor and control the things they are exposed to.
Violent video games might be good (in my opinion) 🗒️
I think violent video games might actually help in reducing real-life violence, by possibly separating violence more from real life.
In some way, I think, it might kind of “trick” your brain into separating violence from reality.
If you see more violence in the games you play than in real life(I hope that is true for you as well, if not please seek help or feel free to message me, I’m ready to listen and help)
(I hope that is true for you as well, if not please seek help or feel free to message me, I’m ready to listen and help)
I have this personal conclusion that it might deceive your brain into thinking that violence should only exist (more or totally) in video games, or movies.
Again, this is just a (foolish) self-made conclusion from me, I am no expert after all.
It is a very complicated topic 😵
Proving that video games cause violence is a very complex thing to do because you will be studying the human mind and how it works.
Our brains are not very easy to observe, at least now, because we still don’t have machinery for the job. Who knows? Maybe someday we’ll have some of those.
So, I guess the best thing to do for now is to patiently wait until the experts serve us with more information in the future.
While we wait for hard, proven facts 😴
Maybe we can look into some other topics regarding video games.
Are video games addictive? 🤪
“Video game addiction is a real mental health condition affecting millions of people around the world.”
Apparently, some sources and some experts say that video game addiction is legit a real thing.
They even say that it can possibly alter the brain’s physical structure as dangerous drugs and stimulants do. Scary, right?
This is where the saying, “Everything in Moderation” comes in. As a rule, too much of everything is bad, whatever that is.
Do video games rot your brain? 🤯
“Violent shooter video games really DO rot your brain: Frequent players have less gray matter, study reveals.
Playing violent ‘shooter’ video games can damage the brain and may even increase the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, brain scans suggest. “
They say, that this thing called gray matter composes most of our brain and is said to be involved in information processing and other brain functions.
My say on this matter is that this loss of gray matter might really happen if you just play video games all day and do nothing else.
Imagine if our brains just did one single thing every day, it would get used to that and eventually, it really is bound to be “dumber”, because it would not get any other stimulation and training.
Just like our bodies, if they don’t do anything for a long time, they go bad.
Video games can be a healthy way to “blow off steam” 💨
Let’s say you’ve had a really bad day, or you had an unpleasant encounter with someone you don’t really like, or you are just angry in general.
Video games, specifically the shooting and fighting ones, can actually be a great way to “blow off steam”, or let some “angries” out, in my opinion.
What I do personally is resort to my favorite kind of shooting game, battle royale games.
In these games, there are like, tons of other real humans, like yourself (or not?, Just kidding), and you simply fight each other until only one is left standing.
Then, to “blow off some steam”, I imagine that my enemies are the “annoying” people in real life, and when I do defeat those enemies, I feel somewhat relieved.
This technique really works, at least for me. Instead of punching their face IRL, you punch them virtually and imaginatively, haha, just kidding.
(yes, imaginatively is a real word, found out just now, as I searched it)
Benefits of playing video games ✔️
- Improves coordination
- Improves problem-solving skills
- Enhances memory
- Improves attention and concentration
- It is a great source of learning
- Improves the brain’s speed
- Enhances multitasking skills
- Improves social skills
As you can see, even just “playing” video games can actually be beneficial, especially if you play the right kinds of games and you set a healthy limit on how long to play.
All right, I’m gonna go send this link to my parents, to prove that playing video games is not that bad. Here I go again,defending my video game addiction.
What video games are good for the brain? 🧠
If you are dead serious about training your brain, then you should resort to the games meant for brain training specifically, like Lumosity, Dakim, Clevermind, etc.
But most other video games also train your brain in some way, the above is just a little bit better if you are really, really serious about training and “upgrading” your brain.
What is a healthy time limit on playing video games? ⏱️
This source states that more than 5 hours per day is considered excessive. I actually agree with that, I think that is a reasonable time limit.
As long as you still get to accomplish your responsibilities, socialize and take care of yourself, you’re generally good.
There are still no hard facts that prove video games cause more violence, but more sources and experts agree that it certainly does not cause violence.
In our current generation, we are undoubtedly highly reliant on technology, even for our entertainment, one of them playing video games.
Even though “violent” games are all the rage these days, we must remember that violence rarely solves anything and that almost any problem is solvable through proper communication.