Panic in the streets today, as a recent study undertaken by the University of Rochester has found that people who play first-person shooters make decisions up to 25% faster than people who play more family orientated titles.
The study took a test group of 18-25 year olds and split them into two groups. One group clocked 50 hours of fragging in Unreal Tournament and Call of Duty 2, while the other group spent an equal amount of time playing The Sims 2. After gaming, participants were given a series of audio and visual perceptual tests. While the ratio of correct answers was around the same, participants in the action gaming groups came to their conclusions consistently faster than their simulation gaming peers.
… researchers found that video game players develop a heightened sensitivity to what is going on around them, and this benefit doesn’t just make them better at playing video games, but improves a wide variety of general skills that can help with everyday activities …
-University of Rochester, confirming our fears
Note the results of this study too. It’s not that action gamers answered more questions correctly than other gamers, just that they were quicker in making up their minds. This effectively means that if an action gamer makes a bad decision, he makes it far faster than a mere Joe 12-pack could.
And if that’s not enough reason to be shitting your pants in terror, this is the same university which claimed in 2007 that playing action video games sharpens gamers eyesight by ~20%. So not only are gamers more prone to violence (something which incidentally they’re completely desensitized to) but they can decide to be violent 25% faster and use their hawk-like eyes to carry the violent act out.
It’s the clear the only response governments around the world can now take is to quietly mobilise their respective military forces, and scatter Cheetos in front of key staging areas with the hopes of delaying the hyper-aware yet hopelessly snack food addicted hordes.
How can people continue to ignore the warning signs? Science is telling us to remain ever vigilant against this menace, friends! Or at least try and limit your gaming to titles like Pony Friends 2 and Imagine! Babbies!