A presentation at today’s British Psychological Society annual conference revealed driving games can make you more aggressive than violent and graphic videogames.

The findings, presented by Dr. Simon Goodson and Sarah Perason from Huddersfield University, compared three types of game; a racing game (Project Gotham), a first person shooter (Perfect Dark Zero) and a 3D table tennis game. The results show the driving game to induce more aggressive brain activity than any other title, with the 3D sports title coming in a close second.

The results suggest the link between violent videogames and violence is undermined, so IncGamers spoke to Dr. Goodson asking why the driving game had the most effect.

“I think people can relate to that more easily, they understand the frustration of driving.  It’s not every day you get to play with a shotgun, but most people do drive everyday.”

Asked if there was any other research which could contradict the findings of his team, Dr. Goodson was quick to point out that no research done up to this point could be used as it was unreliable.

“A lot of previous videogame research has been conducted partly because people have jumped on the bandwagon because it’s a hot topic.  If you look for the literature, there are people comparing games because they think they are different because they have different titles, but they’re effectively the same game. 

“If you do look through literature you find there are a host of common sense errors, like players using 13” screens to play games, which would never happen.”

Dr. Goodson said the research he was undertaking hoped to outline the changes, if any, in the human psychological traits after playing videogames, but made it clear that they weren’t trying to find a link between violent games and violent behaviour. 

“We do some standard psychological trait measures that are being used on violent offenders because as much as people say that videogames make you violent, you have to have some context and something to compare it to.  If videogames do make people violent, then we need to see how they compare to the results of violent offenders.”

We’ll be keeping an eye on the tests and results of Dr. Goodson’s research.  See what other psychologists have told IncGamers here.

Paul Younger
Founder and Editor of PC Invasion. Founder of the world's first gaming cafe and Veteran PC gamer of over 22 years.

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