Violence and video games
ENG 102 Royere Jonathan
The future of entertainment revolves around technology. Video games become more and more realistic. The main consumers for violent video games are teens. These games encourage killing and fighting enemies. More ways of playing violent video games are created each year, but most of us have this question in mind. Do violent video games influence young people to act aggressively? I play violent video games online and I am 16 years old. Overplaying video games can have many disastrous effects on teen limiting gameplay can have multiple positive effects.
Overplaying can incite young players to act violently. Repetitive killing can train them to act aggressively. Most video games are just killing if the player does these actions to often he can subconsciously learn those actions and be violent himself. In a study two groups of kids were asked to play violent video games more than another group. The group who had more exposure to the game was more violent than the one who did not play as much. (CNN.com) Playing too much violent video games can make the player think violence is fun. When the game is played the teen can associates violence with entertainment. Also for performing violent acts the player always gets a reward. If the person plays the game too much they can develop the habit of being aggressive for fun. In some way if the game is played to much the boundaries between violence and fun in the game and violent in real life can be crossed. Most games have blood, many weapons such as explosives or rifles. Being exposed to those behaviors in the game, dead bodies and blood can make the players insensitive to violence. According to aacp.org video games cause kids to be unsocial violent and obese. Overplaying will make the players familiar with images of violent acts and if the player does it continuously it will seem like a normal thing to him.
Video games can be very addictive if abused. In the game the players is constantly rewarded and will do the same actions over and over again in order to succeed and be rewarded as much as possible in the game. As well one thing that keeps the players "Hooked up" is most video games have many objectives that take time to achieve. Most games have levels that are for prestige, armor parts or power ups. People are constantly in a state of competition and want to be the highest and the first to achieve all those objectives in the games, but the problem is that they take days and days of game play. In a game that I play it would take 12 days of non-stop of playing to reach the highest level sometimes more. On top of this all games have achievement with are medals usually rewarded for an incredible action in the game, they are only there for bragging and fun. People keep on playing violent video games for countless hours because of competition. Groups and alliance in the games also incite players to invest more time they have meeting and ask players to log on in a specific hour of the day. Even though there is not scientific proof why people are addicted to video games many people believe it has to do with most of those things, rehab centers have been created just for video game addiction.
As a result of playing abundantly players are more likely to have poor social skills and be overweight. According to ScienceDaily.com a study on teen show that people are more likely to eat while playing video games that to eat while resting. Video games require no physical activity and most people eat while playing those. This unbalances the calorie intake and outtake. Games do not in any way encourage players to go out and exercise they want people to play more video games. Over playing violent video games can "shield" teens from going out and making friends. They do not go outside and meet new people. They feel no need to make friends because they are constantly occupied playing the game and attempting to achieve objectives in the game. As they meet people in the game they think it is enough but they are not comfortable in face to face conversations. They only speak through a headset. People do not view them as who they really are they view them as their players; if their rank is high they earned the respect of their peers in the games. In real life interaction they are not behind the mask of their character which makes them uncomfortable.
Limiting the gameplay of violent video games for young people can have many positive effects. The player can decompress from daily stress. If the players had a rough day instead of being aggressive and maybe hurting something or someone, he can take out his anger on a virtual enemy in the video games instead of causing damage. Violent videogames provide exactly that kind of escape, giving kids "an arena where they can play with fantasies of danger, aggression and conflict, developing a feeling of mastery that can serve as an antidote, or at least a necessary break, from daily anxieties," (Jones in wired.com) Since the players doesn't play too much he just sees the video game as a way to relax and decompress. He is not addicted to the video game and just sees it as a way to entertain himself at some times. Players instead of being aggressive to people if they are angry can decompress in the game. It is like a punching ball but virtually. According to a graph in pro con.org the youth crime rate went down as the video games sales went up. This show that most people are not addicted and take decompress using video games. Also video game can be good for a quick pastime if the player is waiting 30 minutes for something, it is good to occupy for a short period of time. Some video games can make young players learn facts and consequences. For example capitals of countries can be learned as well as the locations on a map. Consequences of acting recklessly can be learned when the players gets killed or arrested.
Ratings in video games and age restrictions should be more strictly applied. Rating inform the buyer to know what kind of game is being bought and what is in it, violence, drugs, sexual actions and many more. The parents should accompany their kids and look at the rating to see if it is appropriate for the teen to play it. This would help buyers to see if the game is suitable for a certain range of age. Video games store should refuse to tell violent video game with over 18 rating to minors. Most video game clerks in stores do not check if the buyer is age appropriate for them or if the game is suitable for them. A minor client might not be mature enough for the game. In an article from Cnn.com by Rebecca Leung; a boy named Devin Moore shot two police officers and a 911 dispatcher. The game that influenced him was grand theft auto four; he played countless hours of it. In this game it is a society where the player is free to do whatever he wants the game encourages you to kill anyone in your way, a pedestrian, gang members or even the police. Accident like that can happen if age limits are not respected or if there is not parental control over these issues. As well an I.D. should be required to buy the game to double check. Many incidents like the shooting could be avoided.
To conclude over playing video games has many negative effects such as addiction, obesity, poor social skills, aggressive behavior and sleep deprivation. But if the right actions are taken by limiting the game play by for example setting limits of time played on the console and checking the ratings that show the content of the game many negative consequence can be avoided and positive things can happen.