Do You Feel More Aggressive After Playing Grand Theft Auto V?
This is a legitimate question.
It's not meant to poke fun at the haters, naysayers and skeptics. Sure, many of them are clueless about interactive entertainment, but that's not the purpose of this article. Those people don't need any extra assistance to look foolish, trust me on that.
No, I'm just wondering if you feel different after playing a game like Grand Theft Auto V. Some believe the hectic, violent nature of such games makes people more aggressive, even if it's a subconscious thing. There's no doubt that I believe such claims as it pertains to children; kids are like sponges, and they'll soak up anything and everything. They also tend to mirror what they see, as they're still learning and developing. This is why I honestly believe that giving GTAV to an 8-year-old qualifies as child abuse. Same goes for those idiot parents who let their kids see something like "Saw" at the age of 10.
However, I'm referring to fully developed, grown, mature (hopefully) adults. If you consider yourself to be in that category, do you notice any change in behavior after playing GTAV? Or if not a direct change of behavior, an alteration to your thought processes? Even if you don't resort to violence to solve a conflict of some kind, for instance, maybe the thought crosses your mind a little faster than before. Something like that. Desensitization is also a very real phenomenon, so maybe you find yourself caring less about terrible tragedies and murders that you see on the news. All of this is likely very possible; I'm just wondering if anybody has noticed it.
For my part, I notice no change. Maybe it's just because I've been playing games for so long, and I've always equated them with relaxation in my mind. They're stress relievers more than anything else and when I'm done, I feel better. They can be used to get out some pent-up frustration, I suppose, and I've wanted to throw a controller or two in my time. But in any form of competition, occasional frustration is inevitable. That being said, I sense no less consideration for the sanctity of human life. In fact, I find myself going the opposite way: After a GTAV session, I'm probably more likely to hold doors for people, more likely to say "please" and "thank you," more likely to pick up something someone has dropped.
Maybe it's just because after all that sin and vice, my brain seeks niceness. But I get that not everyone works this way. ;)
9/20/2013 9:48:40 PM Ben Dutka