Does Video Game Violence Affect Children?


Abstract

Does Video Game Violence Affect Children?

This project shows if video game violence affects children. Many children
between the ages of eight years old and ten years old will be observed before,
during, and after playing violent video games. Looking for violent behavior
before, during, and after playing violent video games is the whole experiment.
The conclusion is that most children have no problems after playing the violent
videogames.

I think that most of the children will be unaffected by playing violent games.
Most children have the ability to tell the difference between reality and a game,
so they should act normally. But the others may have their behavior affected
because of the lack of telling the difference between reality and pretend.

For my experiment I used a Super Nintendo, Nintendo 64, Sega Genesis, Sony
Playstation, and PC CD-ROM. The games I used were Mortal Kombat Trilogy (on
Nintendo 64), Mortal Kombat II (on Super Nintendo), Mortal Kombat (on Sega
Genesis), Killer Instinct Gold (on Nintendo 64), Power Rangers (on Sega Genesis),
Tomb Raider (on PC CD-ROM), and Bishouju Senshi Sayla Moon SuperS (on Japanese
Playstation).

The first step I used was gathering a group of children ages 8-10 years old (5
girls, and 5 boys), got their parents permission, and made sure they had no idea
there was an experiment taking place. The second step I took was observing the
children play together before being exposed to violent video games, I looked for
any sign of violent behavior. What I consider violent behavior is punching,
kicking, slapping (even if no contact is made), and cussing. After watching
them I discovered that none of them showed any signs of violent behavior. The
third step was letting them play the video games. I had problems getting the
five girls to play the games, they refused unless I let them play Sailor Moon
first. After that was settled I observed their behavior and I noticed twitching
fingers, eyebrows, and toes. Fourth I let them play together again and observed
their behavior for any signs of violence. Two days after they went home I
called their parents and asked if their has been any change in their child's
behavior.

Throughout most of the experiment the children have had no "bad" behavioral
problems until the end of my experiment. In the last phase of my experiment two
of the boys had exibited violent behavior, which was them pretending to fight.
Also in the last phase of my experiment two of the girls seemed very disgusted
after viewing "fatalities" from Mortal Kombat Trilogy. Also when I called their
houses one of the children's parents notified me of unusually violent behavior
the day before.

The results prove my hypothesis to be correct. Most of the children had no
changes but some of them did. I think that if people explain to their children
and teach them the difference between reality and a game there would be no
problems with behavior after playing violent video games. Also I agree with the
rating system used to regulate gaming, because some children are not ready to
watch someone's head get ripped off (even if the characters aren't real) at a
young age. A mistake I had made were not getting written permission for the use
of their children in my experiment even though I did get verbal.

Bibliography

Mind at Play: The Psychology of Video Games Elizabeth F. Loftus

Youth Violence Michael D. Biskup

Fist, Stick, Knife, Gun Geofferey, Canada

Game Players magazine

Game Fan magazine

Electronic Gaming Monthly magazine

PC Gamer magazine

PC Novice magazine

Bill's Child Psychology Net Site

Doug's page O' Video Game Violence

Category: Philosophy