A study by American and Canadian universities has revealed that ‘online’ video games do not reduce or replace real-life socialization, but complement and even expand it. It was also noted that even the most ruthless players can lead a perfectly normal life outside the game.
Recent research has found that online social relationships are not replacing real social relationships among people who play online video games. In fact these online games are enlarging the social life of the players. The study was conducted by researchers from North Carolina State University (NCSU), the University of York (Toronto, Canada) and the University Of Ontario Institute Of Technology (Canada).
“The players are not the antisocial inhabitants of basements that we see in stereotypes of pop culture, but very social people,” he says in a press release NCSU Nick Taylor, assistant professor of communication at the university, and lead author of the article on the study. “This doesn’t surprise the community of players, but it’s worth telling everyone else. Loners are the exception, not the norm.”
The researchers traveled to more than 20 public gaming events in Canada and the United Kingdom, including events for 2,5000 players, held at convention centers, to events for 20 players, held in bars. The researchers looked at the behavior of thousands of players, and surveyed 378 players in depth, focusing on participants in important online multiplayer role-playing games, such as EVE Online and World of War craft.
The researchers were interested in monitoring the virtual and real behavior of the players, focusing on the way they communicated with each other. They discovered that the game was only part of the social behavior in these game events.
“We observed that players often performed many social behaviors at once: watching games, talking, drinking and chatting,” says Taylor. “The games did not eliminate social interaction, they complemented it.”
“This was so regardless of what game each played, and if a player’s behavior in the game was altruistic. For example, a player could be completely ruthless in the game and still socialize normally in reality. “The researchers also noted that the players did not distinguish between the time they spent playing and the time they spent watching other people playing. “Everything was included in the game category, which they see as a social activity,” explains Taylor.
Taylor points out that this work focused on Western gaming communities, and that he is interested in studying the relationship between social behaviors and games in other cultures.
This research joins other recent studies that have observed positive aspects in online games, as opposed to the usual view that they absorb the person. The University of Penn State (Pennsylvania, USA) found that if video games are used to strengthen ties with friends or family who are geographically far away, they are positive in that regard. For example Smash Bros. Ultimate Is Paying Tribute to Melee in a New Event, a Chance to Relive the Glory Found Within Smash Bros. Melee
In addition, they may have other more varied uses. The University of Southern California He noted that, by combining a physical exercise program with a video game program, a healthy life can be stimulated. Researchers have used computer games to prevent the spread of HIV / AIDS. The system combines video games, an internet forum and video dramatizations, which allows young people to choose the format they like best to acquire the necessary knowledge.