Well, I'm not an expert in human psychology, but it seems undeniable, based on our history, that humans have a certain level of natural aggression. No laws or religions are going to fully eradicate that aggression and propensity for violence. It seems to me that violent video games may provide a non-destructive outlet for that aggression, and thus keep it from building up. Now, assuming one's ability to clearly distinguish fantasy from reality has not been compromised, they will essentially be training themselves to work out their aggression in a virtual environment instead of on people in the physical world.
Many modern multiplayer online games are about player cooperation. As a player, you usually join or form a guild / tribe /clan with other players and work towards goals as a team.
I believe this can be beneficial as there are people of all ages from all over the world in these teams. They use online chat to converse and plan strategies to help or defeat other player groups.
Some players have been playing the same game for 5- 15 years. Player groups have real life social events and even real marriages have occurred from meeting online in a game.
From my experience, the most common danger is forming an addiction to games, when you go through periods of falling asleep and waking up thinking about a game. This has a broader effect on relationships and socialising.
My opinion is that for someone to be inspired by a game to carry out some atrocity, there must be other factors like mental illness or drugs involved.
I doubt there has ever been a more despicable time in human history than the second world war. Human beings did every sick thing possible to other human beings. What was their influence?
Forgot to add. These days, instead of watching TV or a movie, a lot of people prefer to unwind by playing online games.
Instead of mindlessly watching something, you get a chance to be proactive in shaping your experience.
Its pure escapism, just like many other recreational activities.
I don't play violent video games myself and I personally find simulated gore and murder distasteful (though I enjoy kungfu/martial arts movies on an aesthetic level). That said all of my experience and knowledge of psychology tells me that there is no causal relationship between violent entertainment and real violence. You may as well suggest that people who watch porn are more likely to have sex.
The most that can be said is that violent people like violent entertainment. Gee, who would have guessed that?
I think you could make a better case that the Hollywood movies that portray psychopaths and extreme violence desensitize people more than video games, that don't really look real even with a high-end PC, do.
Heck, I feel more like shooting people after watching the news - maybe we should ban that?
Hmm.. are you sure not to confess to the elders and your parents?
I was raised in a Catholic family and still violent video games, horror movies, etc. were a strict no-no. Most of the kids in our vicinity were addicted to violent video games and some of these kids started to identify themselves with violent characters and used profanities. All of this blew out my parents minds and nothing of this sort ever came to our home. But our house was never void of entertainment and hence we never felt that we were missing something,
All of those kids are grown up and good people now.
As far as I’m aware, there are inconclusive studies in this matter. Not all violent video game players become aggressive and short tempered individuals, the way not all smokers get lung cancer. The entertainment industry is probably reluctant to admit that they are marketing a harmful product, much like the tobacco industry was reluctant to admit that they were marketing a harmful product.
However, in my house and in the future for my kids too, I would prefer not to expose them to violent video games or smoking.
I've been playing video games on an almost daily basis since I was about 5, now 39...some violent and some cute-n-cuddly types. Recently started playing sniper games on my iPhone and have played many first person shooters.
I've never wanted to kill anyone IRL. I think people that are unstable may have issues, but a normal sane person can tell the difference.
joey jojo - sounds fun. I'll have to check that one out ;-) Thx
Get this. I know a an inactive JDub who hasn't been to a meeting in years. Yet plays one of those on line war games with some of the the local dubs. A season can last for hours. Which makes me wonder how much FS is going on, on the Saturday.