Violent video games: aggressive thoughts?

October 12, 2005

Michigan State University researchers say playing violent video games leads to brain activity patterns that may be characteristic for aggressive thoughts.

Using a functional magnetic resonance imaging study, 13 male research participants were observed playing a latest-generation violent video game. Each participant's game play was recorded and content analyzed on a frame-by-frame basis.

"There is a causal link between playing the first-person shooting game in our experiment and brain-activity patterns that are considered as characteristic for aggressive cognitions and affects," said Rene Weber, assistant professor of communication and telecommunication at MSU. "There is a neurological link and there is a short-term causal relationship."

Violent video games frequently have been criticized for enhancing aggressive reactions. "On a neurobiological level," said Weber, "we have shown the link exists."

Weber conducted the research with Klaus Mathiak of the Rheinisch-Westfalische Technical University in Aachen, Germany, and Ute Ritterfeld of the University of Southern California.

The study will be detailed in the January edition of the journal Media Psychology.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

Explore further: Cross-cultural study strengthens link between media violence and aggressive behavior

Related Stories

Profanity in TV and video games linked to teen aggression

October 17, 2011

While it's been long established that watching violent scenes increases aggression levels, a new study in the medical journal Pediatrics suggests that profanity in the media may have a similar effect. Pediatrics is the top-ranked ...

Older men most likely to link video games with aggression

December 19, 2013

Video and computer games have seen a huge rise in popularity worldwide. The fact that such games provide an immersive virtual experience has led to public concerns, often articulated in the media, about a possible link between ...

Recommended for you

How artificial intelligence is taking on ransomware

June 28, 2017

Twice in the space of six weeks, the world has suffered major attacks of ransomware—malicious software that locks up photos and other files stored on your computer, then demands money to release them.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.