Hein (fub) wrote,

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Violence in games...

Of course, by now everyone knows all about the various arguments for and against the theory that violence in videogames begets real-life violence. And if not real-life violence, then perhaps gamers get desensitised to violence, making the threshold to perpetrate violence lower...

So instead of some wonky thought experiment, one researcher decided to measure involuntary muscle responses, galvanic skin reactions, the whole range of physical indicators of emotions. He found something interesting: gamers are distressed when they shoot an enemy in-game. (Instead, the gamers reacted positively to... getting killed (in-game, of course). The reasons why that is so are explained in the article, but that is not what I want to focus on.)

Apparently, shooting an enemy in a FPS game does not provide the player with pleasure. It probably triggers some deep-seated ethical responses to violence. It would be interesting to see whether the response increases as games become more and more realistic -- that would mean that gamers are getting more moral teaching from modern, realistic shooters than from, say, Space Invaders!

I propose we make violent games as realistic as we possibly can, to educate everyone on the awful nature of violence!
Tags: games, society

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