December 27, 2006

Video Games Not Fun


Researchers at the University of Rochester have found children and teens are addicted to video games to fulfill their psychological needs.

We think there's a deeper theory than the fun of playing," says Richard M. Ryan, a motivational psychologist at the University and lead investigator in the four new studies about gaming. Players reported feeling best when the games produced positive experiences and challenges that connected to what they know in the real world.

This discovery comes as no surprise to the video game industry, as they were the first to implement the exploitive “high score” system into its games to addict players.


Why is that a bad thing? If they are fulfilling it on a game console and not on a real person why should you care?

This is just the same as parents against penny farthings and the waltz or parents against TV. Video games are used in the same way as those were, as an excuse for bad parenting.

Although it's true that kids can become somewhat dependant on video games (I very rarely go more than a week without playing), it's also easy to forget that the alternative is much worse. Socially, there are two options - go and hang out with mates, or stay in and play video games. It might seem like an obvious decision, but you should bare in mind that playing video games can be just as sociable (most "gamers" play with their friends, reinforcing potentially life-long friendships). Also, kids who are inside playing video games are (importantly I feel) not outside, hanging about on street corners intimidating passers by. I've never once been intimidated by a person who's in their own home, playing on their computer, but in today's world where teens often lack discipline, just their presence on the opposite side of the street can prove very intimidating for a passer-by on their on, especially when it's dark.

I propose to you that this "psychological addiction" is actually a crime-preventing side-effect of enjoying oneself. You will find (if you read the evidence), that prolonged repetition of ANY activity can cause symptoms of addiction - not just video games. It's not the game itself that's addicting people, it's the length of time that those people spend doing just one thing that's the problem.

What the world needs less of is people who blame horrible parenting on the content of video games to ease their conscience.

Video games do more than negative things.

You are stubborn, and ignorant.

Oh my you are very right, I saw my son playing a game called "frogger" in which a frog is made to jump back and forth across traffic!!!1 this of course teaches him to jump back and forth across traffic like a devil child!1 to rectify the situation I beat him with a led rod so that he can not walk anymore and will not play in traffic!!1 thank you for your helpful website, you saved my son from devilry

This isn't serious right? Oh wait, it is? Look,
I know that you right wing, christian conservative soccer moms want to protect your children, but come on, stop worrying about your kids!

I have grown up playing games ever since I was 3 years old, not only did it enhance my reading and my grades in English, Math, Science and History, but, it also gave me the coordination, patience and perseverance to become a professional lead guitar player.

Video games saved my life, they gave me something to escape into from this socially shallow and mundane society that we are THRUST into. Role Playing in online games allowed me to BE somebody, it allowed me to finally be a hero, to be important, unlike being shunned in school for being over-weight. Video games have saved me from performing acts such as shooting people, cutting their throats out with a knife or other violent ways of killing people. Video games have calmed me, and given me a release that only two other things have been able to do in my life: Masturbation and Playing Guitar, yeah I said masturbation, OMFG!!! Run for the hills! Cleanse him!!!!

Wake up you ignorant, poor representations of our irresponsible parents in this generation and start being a responsible parent and start talking to your kids and being their best friends! Infact! Join them in playing video games! It will strengthen their connection with you!

Samakar out!

In case you diddn't know, Mr.Willegers, the "Frogger" franchise has directly influenced at least 17 major traffic accidents, more than 11 of which involved death or serious, unrecoverable bodily injury.
Think about that next time you laugh at our efforts.

Blame a video game for poor parenting? A new low if you ask me.

Frogger has indeed influenced several car accidents. But let's get a summary of what this day at home may be like.

The kid wakes up, plays frogger. Eats breakfast at 10:30. Parents make him shower for the first time in a month. He plays more frogger, snacking on chips and chocolate, until 1:00, where his parents kick him out of the house so they can get away from that music. The kid, bored and annoyed, decides to emulate frogger by crossing the street when cars are coming. The rest, as they say, is history.

Real great parenting there, eh?

So after reading most of the pages on this website I'm still confused. Are you blaming video games for violence on the world? One person posted that the people who run this site are conservative christian rightwing raticals. Which in my mind make perfect sense. The only group of people on this earth who are to ignorant to look at themselves and see their faults. A video game will not brainwash your kids into thinking they are invincible. If a child truly feels they are invincible then the parents have failed in their job, or better yet their duty to ensure that their children understand all of the dangers of the world.

Watch this

Talking about video games influencing our children in a bad way? All of you should be ashamed of yourselves.

I, myself, am a videogaming teenager.
I play video games, watch t.v., hang out with my friends, and get A's and B's on my report card.
I've never thought of going on a killing spree, driving off a cliff to reset, or getting into a fight, only to drink some soda to make myself feel better.
I'd say about 50% of my time out of school was spent on games.
The only thing i can see wrong with video gaming, is the parents. If I'm playing for 60 hours a week, and no-one is telling me to go out with my friends, or to play with my siblings, I'll still do it for fun.
So instead of trying to ban video game sales, or trying to shut down major, hardworking corporations, why not just stop bad parenting?
I just think this who anti-gaming fervor is making games the new rock+roll.
I realize, however that all the people at MAVAV ar not crazy Jack Thompson-wannabes, or right wing conservists, but people who want to understand other view points, and get support, in case their sons/daughters are addicted. This comment was not directed toward those people.
This comment was for the parents who say they care for their children, and yet sit in their rooms watching t.v, or go out every other night, but still expect their children to be responsiblein what they do.
I'm not saying the parents have to be there every second of the day.
I'm just saying maybe you should talk to your son or daughter about their addiction, before you flip out on a website, where noone knows who you are, noone knows your circumstances, and noone knows what your homelife is like.

Well video games are what you can call a "Scapegoat". Some teenager shoots a kid and blames it on playing too much Grand Theft Auto. It has been done many times. If a video game can influence a child, then how about movies? A childs mind is very delicate and most of these so called "Video game related accidents" are just a way to show bad parenting. And video game addiction is just another one to sum it up with every other addiction. None are healthy. Don't just blame games when there is nothing else to blame. Your son shot a kid?? Why did he do it? If you see no cause behind it you just blame anything violence related. And this is an outrage to just put so much effort to try to ban something that shoudn't be a direct problem.

Wait, game developers were the first to implement high scores?

Are you people familiar with the concept of competition?

At all?

"High scores" have been around for literally millennia. Every sporting event ever has required a "high score" in some form.

By your reasoning, we should all be out pole-vaulting twenty-four hours a day since it's so addicting.

Im 12 and i play Grand theft auto,F.E.A.R. Half-life,Gears of war and other violent video games.Ive never got a gun and shot some one because of it.Some times kids Injure/kill others from being bullyed or harrased.
On Grand Theft Auto you can get in to a amblunce and take people to the hospital its not all about killing people.Are people going to blame Midtown Madness for bad driveing?
And ive all ready said im 12 and i played eq1 eq2 wow nothing bads happened.Im not addicted to it.

Ok For all of you that blame videogames for bad behavior you have to be ashamed of yourself as well. They put a rating system on videogames for a reason. I work at Ebgames and every time that we have a person underage or that looks underage and they are trying to buy a mature game we force them to get there parents to buy the game for them. And let me tell you half the time they dont come back becacuse either there parents arent here or they dont want them to own the game. Video games are a fantasy world that doesnt exist. you have to let your children know and understand that. if you dont you are causeing more of a problem then not. If your children chose to play videogames instead of hanging out with friends let them. There not hurting anyone by playing them there having fun. Im a college student who plays videogames on my free time with friends and it has not fased me. If your child is playing a game that you think is affecting them look at the rating and if its not for them take it away simple as that. Don't be a dictator be a negotiator.

hey im a gamer and i say it prowdly i dont care what u say i got thos achivments and they were fun but if for a second you try to blame video games for your mistakes of try to blame video games for other peopls mistake then you are all truly ignoran. im a 16 year old gamer with a gamer score of 5430 and i still maintain the ability to tell the difference between videogames and reality so take this to advice the better thing to do is not brutaly take away the video games but teach your children the difference between the 2 worlds

It's people like you that give us Christians a bad name. Yes, a christian who likes to play videogames! I admit, not all games are good for kids to play, but that is what the ratings are for! Maybe you should be getting people to look at the ratings of the games so they don't get them for their kids if they deem them inappropriate, and stop trying to write all games off as evil like people did with heavy metal and fantasy books

Thank you Jin-Li! I agree! I also am a Christian gamer, and I see more teens that are destructive because parents don't love them enough to spend time with them, or just hand over money and say buy what you like!CHECK THE RATING! And the only thing we could do as a moral society is ask that rated Mature game AD's on TV only be shown after hours and enforcement of the underage selling of mature games be looked at. What a novel idea!I think AD's for movies that are scary with graphic images need to be on later, as well as the content be watered down.What about daytime soaps? Any Christian sites screaming about that immoral and explicit garbage being seen by children? Not to mention the graphic nature of daytime talk shows to commercials during any show about a "Mans Enhancement"?If I hear about Herpes one more time I think I will flip!I think violent games and movies are not being seen in the same light as they should be. The only reason this fear based propaganda exists is these people are not playing these games because they lack skill and understanding to play them. Pick up a controller and play tetris people and get schooled. If you wanna know whats in a game, play it ALL TH WAY THROUGH.

Super Mario Bros. had a "high score" system. Your argument is illogical.

High Scores were made before you had multi-player; they were so you could compete with friends.

In a misguided attempt at having some kind of rational debate here, I'll broach a topic that I know most parents aren't aware of.

American football is competitive, with scores and everything. Please, take a moment to steady yourself after the shock of this revelation. And you know, I'll go further. Not only is it competitive, but last time I checked, it requires that physical human beings deliberately charge at other human beings - with the desired result being extremely forceful physical impact.

It's hard to see, but if you watch a game closely, you can definately watch it happen. This is a game designed to make people violent, to teach them to hurt other people. Indeed, I propose that we class it as a "Violence Simulator". And in June 2005, there was a violent beating in Washington - and all of the assailants were football players. Obviously, not a coincidence.

I will hereby personally stake my own life on the fact that more people have been hurt playing sports than playing videogames. Sports are addictive too, by your logic.

You Joe Liberman hugging soccer moms have nothing logical to say. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH SONIC THE HEDGEHOG. You just need to give Hillary Clinton an excuse for a child weilding a 9mm. I'm 24 and run my own Video game business and I think you need to find another scapegoat like football, or The Fairly Odd Parents or even the show 24!

the point about not being on the streets is a point, but thats a supid point, I used to play computer games 30+ hours a week. Computer games were the God of my life. My grades slid, and while i was not on the street, i was miserable. I became a Christian, and suddenly while i may have the occasional longing for a game, God for the most part, removed the desire from me, so even when I am tempted, it is relatively easily overcome. But trust me, stopping on your own strength *is* impossible. I know, because i *was* there.

hey what is the big deal? video games are just that they are games we have been having this problem since the beginning but do you really think you will be able to stop them? there is much more a higher involvment now of people playing video games them people not playing video games and just because you think its wrong doesn't make it so you do very little testing and then condem it just like that. Its just a game nothing more nothing less you people need to chill out

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