New Study Says “Violent Video Games May Increase Moral Sensitivity”

Remember when your parents told you that violent video games and violent movies would desensitize you to violence? A study coming out of the University of Texas Austin and Michigan State University suggest that your parents were big fat liars….Well, maybe.

The study finds that doing heinous acts in video games increased the players sensitivity towards those acts in normal life. So, you car-jack a car or murder a hooker in GTA and you may be more sensitive about car-jacking and hooker murdering in real life. Super!

“We found that after a subject played a violent video game, they felt guilt and that guilt was associated with greater sensitivity toward the two particular domains they violated — those of care/harm and fairness/reciprocity,”

THAT’S WHAT I JUST SAID LESS INTELLIGENTLY. The study, which will be published in an upcoming “Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking” claims that we should all rethink the effects of violent video games.

Mortal Kombat taught me how severe one’s torso from their body.

I’ll wait to see the actual piece, but this seems like a common thread: Group A will claim negative about violent video games and then weeks later Group B will claim something positive about violent video games. There’s no definitive answer on the violent video game subject (AND THAT MAKES ME RAGE, AS I WAS JUST PLAYING MORTAL KOMBAT)

“Our findings suggest that emotional experiences evoked by media exposure can increase the intuitive foundations upon which human beings make moral judgments… This is particularly relevant for video-game play, where habitual engagement with that media is the norm for a small, but considerably important group of users.”

That, of course, would go against many who claim that violent video games are the downfall of our society and that they caused the second world war.  We’ll keep an eye out for the actual research and report back on its methodology, so stay tuned….you 4 readers!

Check out the University of Buffalo’s piece on the study!

Gamer Girls Magazine: Universally Insulting Gamers

Game Unpaused


There’s been this huge buzz growing over a brand new magazine called Gamer Girls.  At first sight, one would see that title and think, “What in the world could be wrong with a magazine dedicated to female gamers?  How sexist is it to be upset at the notion of a magazine designed to celebrate women who love games?”  Well, the answer is that yes, there is sexism involved when discussing Gamer Girls magazine, but it is in no way being perpetuated by those who have a negative opinion on it.

The philosophy behind the Gamer Girls magazine is not as they would like you to think; this is not a magazine designed to celebrate women who love to game.  One look at the cover tells all; an extremely sexy woman dressed in an extremely scantily cladded outfit (damn near naked) holding a controller.  Take a peak at this article discussing…

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Libertarism and Video Games: A match made in heaven? Poll Says So.


A Ron Paul video game already exist. No “Take Nap” bonus level included.

A poll coming out of the magazine “Reason”, a libertarianism magazine, finds that there might be a correlation between libertarian beliefs and playing video games. Should gamers be flocking to the polls for Rand Paul, or is this all just bogus. WHO IS TO KNOW, PROBABLY NOT GOVERNMENT.

I won’t delve to much into the poll itself, but the poll was administrated by the magazine to gamers to get their beliefs about fiances and consumerism. The poll found that gamers had leaning towards libertarian beliefs, despite the majority of gamers classifying themselves as liberal.

“If there’s any one trend to take away from a poll looking at gamers it’s that gamers don’t like to be told what to do with their lives,…Again, they may describe themselves as liberal, but they do not like government policies that control individual life choices, like what products they can purchase or consume. Video games are all about making choices, right? That’s one mentality that does carry over in real life.”

Hey, ok. Having not seen the actual poll questions, I can’t comment on how slanted the questions were, but certainly one has to take a poll from a libertarian magazine making claims about libertarianism with a major grain of salt. Saying that this poll may have a political slant is a huge understatement. That said, the claims of “not liking being told what to do”  as an indicative  of libertarian beliefs in gamers is a little hard to chew. Even the most liberal individual probably won’t say they “like being told what to do” in regards to their consumer habits. That statement is about as libertarian as donkeys (Get it, because…they’re…democratic).

Some of the “libertarian beliefs” gamers have are:

A significantly larger percentage of gamers than non-gamers believed that they should be allowed to buy caffeinated energy drinks, play violent video games, and gamble in online poker games. They also supported legalizing marijuana and 3D printed guns in greater numbers. The biggest difference was gamers’ support for using Bitcoin as a currency. 55 percent of gamers were in favor compared to 30 percent among non-gamers.

I…don’t even know where to pick this apart. It’s pretty silly trying to relate most of these beliefs to a political philosophy , but of course that is what this magazine is trying to do. It would only be more absurd if the claims were “Libertarians drink mountain dew and so do COD gamers! REVELATION!?”  Again, having not seen the actual poll itself, I’m only commenting on the purposed results of the poll, but it seems that the magazine is drawing correlation where there isn’t really much. It’s our job as good sociologist and gamers to question these sorts of pieces, as having the backing of gamers is something many groups may want; They want to play with power.

That’s all for now. Silly poll, silly conclusions. I should have probably put that up front to save you time from reading this articles. TRICKED YA SUCKER.

Update: Nintendo Reaffirms Stance on Same-Sex Relationships in Tomodachi Life


Last year Nintendo responded to a glitch found in their popular Japanese 3ds Title “Tomodachi Collection” that allowed players to enter into same-sex relationships with a patch. We discussed the issue a bit on here and it was admittedly a strange case, as the glitch enabled occurrences such as male Miis becoming pregnant and only allowing for same-sex male relationships.  After the patch was released the response to Nintendo’s action seemed to die down, however the argument has since resurfaced upon Nintendo announcing the game (Tomodachi Life) for North America and Europe. Since then an online petition and miiverse community movement called “Miiquality” have been created to move Nintendo to allow for same-sex relationships in the NA/EU versions of the game. Community members have taken to Miiverse, twitter, facebook and most social media outlets to let Nintendo know of their desires. This week, a representative of Nintendo responded with this statement:

“Nintendo never intended to make any form of social commentary with the launch of Tomodachi Life…The relationship options in the game represent a playful alternate world rather than a real-life simulation ….We hope that all of our fans will see that Tomodachi Life was intended to be a whimsical and quirky game, and that we were absolutely not trying to provide social commentary.”

TLDR: “We’re not trying to be progressive here”.  Unfortunately this is just another strike in Nintendo’s list of things they’re behind the times on.  This could have been a momentous move for Nintendo to show that they are progressive, but instead they chose to show that they are behind the times once again. With other family oriented companies like Disney making strides in representing the LBGT community, it’s unfortunate that Nintendo isn’t following suit. Even from a financial standpoint, the publicity and buzz Nintendo could have created by responding to requests positively could have extremely helped sales of the upcoming. Instead, they’ve only served to anger and disappoint a growing population of their community. They’ve handled this situation like they’ve handled to Wii U  (HAHAHAHAH GET IT. BADLY)

It’s a bizarre world in Tomodachi Life

Then again…Maybe a bizarre, strange experience like Tomodachi life isn’t the best place for Nintendo to make such a stance….or any statement. Regardless, Nintendo needs to step into the modern day.


 Nintendo has released an official apology regarding the subject:

We apologize for disappointing many people by failing to include same-sex relationships in Tomodachi Life. Unfortunately, it is not possible for us to change this game’s design, and such a significant development change can’t be accomplished with a post-ship patch. At Nintendo, dedication has always meant going beyond the games to promote a sense of community, and to share a spirit of fun and joy. We are committed to advancing our longtime company values of fun and entertainment for everyone. We pledge that if we create a next installment in the Tomodachi series, we will strive to design a game-play experience from the ground up that is more inclusive, and better represents all players.

Meh. Seems reasonable enough. To be fair, the original patch that Nintendo released for the Japanese version wasn’t removing the ability to have same sex relationships, it was a patch released to fix a glitch that occurred when players brought over a Mii from another 3ds that inadvertently marks those miis as the wrong gender. They were REALLY trying to not take a stance either way. Perhaps this movement may see the fruits of its labor in future installments of the game.

Pollster Finds Correlation Between Having Tattoos and Video Games, Sociologists say “Duh”

Poll finds big changes in American life

Pollsters Find a Correlation: Tattoos and Video Games


This week the Wall Street Journal revealed their results of a poll gauging American lifestyles and habits. Among other rising trends in young adults, video games and tattoos have stood out as prominent habits in American lifestyle. The rise of video games isn’t surprising since, as we’ve discussed on this blog before, the percentage of Americans playing video games is growing more and more each year. However, the poll has found a overlap in the number of people playing video games and having tattoos.

Wait, there may be gamers that tattoos? SHOCKING.

Pollsters Bill McInturff, and Fred Yang found considerable overlap between tattoo households and people who said they play videogames, though they didn’t know exactly why that is beyond both videogames and tattoos holding more appeal to “younger, downscale respondents.”

You don’t need a doctorate in Sociology to begin to hypothesize why there’s an overlap between the tatted and gamers, it’s fairly obvious that the driving force is that both mediums appeal to a younger demographic. However, as the population of Americans who play video games has grown beyond 50%, the correlation between Video Games and anything begins to weaken. If the majority of the population are playing video games, then it’s reasonable to make the prediction that many niche groups (In this example, people with tattoos) will probably be doing that activity as well. Thus, it’s not really news for “young group A” to have a correlation with playing video games, as that’s the majority of the population for young adults. MORE WORDS TRYING TO EXPLAIN THINGS.

Now that video games are gradually becoming melded into American sociolization, isn’t it time that we start to accurately discussing and evaluating the medium for the increasing part of society that it is? Let’s stop being surprised that people are playing video games. Hopefully we’re doing our own part here to increase the awareness about the study  and discussion of video games.

That looks painful…

More Video Game Tattoos