New Study Finds that Dog Bites Man

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Not that any of this will get the Concerned Senators for America to back off the video game crusade, but maybe someone could forward them this headline: No Strong Link Seen Between Violent Video Games And Aggression.

To wit:

After an average playtime of 56 hours over the course of a month with "Asheron's Call 2," a popular MMRPG, or "massively multi-layer [sic] online role-playing game," researchers found "no strong effects associated with aggression caused by this violent game," said Dmitri Williams, the lead author of the study.

More about the study here; link via Shakespeare's Sister.

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  1. well sure. i’m no fan of government-imposed regulations on videogames, but of course a bunch of 15 year old fanboys who play Asheron’s Call 2 for 56 hours a month and spend the rest of their free time in the chess club aren’t going to be violent. in fact i’m surprised they didn’t find a decrease in violence “due to” these videogames (since all these studies measure is correllation anyway).

  2. The problem is that the average videogame addict plays 56 hours of video games a day.

    In this post September 11th world, we’re just going to have to accept some restrictions on our videogames. Otherwise the terrorists will impose restrictions on our videogames.

  3. The problem is that the average videogame addict plays 56 hours of video games a day.

    LOL, that is a problem. we have got to get those average videogame addicts to start adhering to the same 24 hour days that the rest of us have to live with.

    seriously, my point isn’t that they play for 56 hours a month. that’s a little less than 2 hours a day anyway, not all that much when you think about it. that time could fit neatly between the end of high school and dinner, and a lot of it is probably spent during the weekends anyway. i probably spend a little less than that playing sports videogames.

    it’s just that people who are going to spend that amount of time playing an MMORPG for the PC are not going to be the violent type.

  4. They must have been using the wrong game to measure with. I can tell you that playing Star Wars Galaxies for a while I was most tempted to visit some violence on the the people at SonyOnline.

    Maybe Asheron’s Call just has better support.

  5. Agammamon: You too? I have to admit, Sony Online’s behavior is unexplainable. It’s like customers are some sort of irritation to be gotten rid of.

    I stopped playing Galaxies after the CURB, and it’s — amazingly — appeared to have gotten worse from there.

    WoW is okay, if you can handle the 13 year olds. The huge number of 13 year olds.

  6. I like Guild Wars, personally. The no montly fee aspect is nice, because I don’t feel guilty for not playing.

  7. Morat, that’s why you go onto one of the much-derided RP servers, if you can deal with just PvE.

    I know I play WoW WAAAAAY more than 56 hours a month, probably more like 130+ hours per month, and still make it to work (to read H&R, hmmm), and not killing anyone, although I wish I could sometimes use just a teeny weeny bit of Mind Flay on people.

    Now if I see any murlocs, I’m totally going to kill some…

  8. Morat, what is/was the CURB?

    I bought WoW on the day after Christmas and then I cancelled SWG the next day.

    Since then I have been playing WoW about 70 hours a month on a PvP server. I haven’t noticed too much juvenile behavior.

  9. I’ve been resisting for a long time jumping in the online world, but beginning to crack.

    What, in your opinion, is the best online game for a newbie? Are there any online games that should be avoided? “City of Heroes” looks cool to me.

  10. WoW = World of Warcraft?

    I love the warcraft games.. though I assume WoW is role-playing as opposed to real-time strategy?

  11. Mr. Nice Guy,

    Play original Everequest. Be a female elf and work out a skimpy costume. Pretend to actually be a female, and ask people to powerlevel you.

    Repeat for all MMORPGs where female humanoid characters are available.

    This has been my guide to MMORPG success. Donations appreciated…

  12. RC:

    Dude, that’s hilarious. I actually enjoy creating female characters in single-player games. Firstly, I have a romantic attraction to female heroes. Secondly, I find them much more fun to look at.

    But I’ll pass on your advice 🙂

  13. alkurta: It was when they “rebalanced” the game. It was the launch all over again. Everything broken to hell, and the balance consisted of making combat level-dependent instead of skills-dependent.

    It’s coming off as a bad copy of WoW, written by people who didn’t understand the actual SWG game system in the first place, and are damned determined not to learn. To explain how bad it is — they released the CURB and the Episode III expansion, and netted maybe 5000 new players. That’s pretty damn anemic.

    I play WoW myself now — I preferred the skills and crafting of Galaxies, but I’m sorry, I want a game I can actually play. WoW may be overly simplistic in places, but at least it’s underlying mechanics are sound.

    I admit I have no patience for the twits who complain about nerfing one class or how overpowered another class is or how the Blizzard Devs don’t listen — they’re in fuckin’ paradise compared to people playing SWG.

  14. I loved the UI in SWG and the crafting aspect, but from a design aspect WoW is pure fun with very few dull moments.

    Mr. Nice Guy, give WoW a chance. IMHO, it is great for newbies. Very easy to uderstand what is going on.

    Also, you say you love the Warcraft games. WoW is those games come to life in a 3D interactive world.

    I played SWG from the very first day it came out and played it for a year and a half. After playing WoW for a day, I dropped SWG and never looked back.

  15. The government does stupid things that really promote violence in our country, such as making drugs illegal and restricting folks’ ability to legally conceal weapons. And then they have the audacity to blame violence on video games!!

  16. From Slashdot on Sunday, this link talks about when people take their MMORPG a bit too seriously.

  17. These idiots are on a blind crusade—it doesn’t matter how much evidence you present. I’ve yet to hear Hillary address the cold, hard fact that, for all her bellyaching about violence, adolescent violent crime rates have been falling for years now, and are at an all-time low, since the data was recorded.

  18. If you were a libertarian — or, hell, just an American — which of these arguments would be preferable?

    (1) Video games should not be federally regulated because there is no link between video games and violence.

    (2) Video games should not be federally regulated because such regulation violates the Constitution.

    I’d choose No. 2, myself. And I suspect most folks around here are driven by the same antiregulatory, pro-freedom motivation. Yet many around here argue the issue from corner No. 1, thus keeping the debate in the ideologically hostile territory of the opponent.

    Ceding the very premise of the argument is a really bad way to go, for both rhetorical and ideological reasons. Make the prospective regulators defend their position on YOUR turf — don’t fight the battle on theirs.

    Same goes for smoking ban debates, and countless others, in which our foes are out to create policy on empirical grounds rather than philosophical ones. Freedom should always be defended for freedom’s sake, and that’s it. (Freedom can, and usually does, have empirical benefits, but they are secondary to its real value.)

    The biggest reason freedom has been so eroded, particularly during the past century, is that it is has been so poorly protected. And the biggest reason it has been so poorly protected is that its advocates often disguise their defense in the opponents’ terms.

    That’s my off-the-cuff, unempirical speculation, at any rate.

  19. Freedom should always be defended for freedom’s sake, and that’s it. (Freedom can, and usually does, have empirical benefits, but they are secondary to its real value.

    I agree that Freedom should always be defended for freedom’s sake, and that’s the most important argument. But it’s not the only argument. To carry the day for freedom, we must often incorporate empirical arguments of practical utility into the case.

  20. They just haven’t looked HARD enough. If people just keep funding these studies, eventually one of them will find a rock-hard cause-effect relationship (i.e. mathematically tenuous correllation). And I’d like to be the one who sells it to them at a large price. Why? They’re going to find it anyway.

  21. WoW is jolly good and I play it quite a bit. Its beat staring at the TV screen like drone. I like my entertainment interactive and WoW certainly is interactive. WoW has a decent female player contingent as well.

    In response to Hilary et als crusade I decided to revisit Max Payne for a good ole blast through NYCs nastiest reprobates. Instead of increasing aggresiveness I find it amazingly relaxing and a good vent of frustrations.

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