The Impact of Video Games on Violence

About this sample

About this sample


Words: 788 |

Pages: 2|

4 min read

Published: Mar 25, 2024

Words: 788|Pages: 2|4 min read

Published: Mar 25, 2024

Table of contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Body Paragraphs
  3. Counterarguments
  4. Conclusion
  5. References


The relationship between video games and violence has been a contentious issue for several decades, with some arguing that video games contribute to aggressive behavior and real-world violence. However, a growing body of research challenges this perspective, suggesting that video games do not cause violence. This essay examines the evidence supporting the position that video games are not a significant factor in causing violent behavior, while also addressing counterarguments in greater detail.

'Why Violent Video Games Shouldn't Be Banned'?

Body Paragraphs

Despite numerous studies investigating the link between video games and violence, the evidence remains inconsistent and inconclusive. Many studies have failed to establish a causal relationship between video game exposure and aggressive behavior (Ferguson, 2015). In fact, some studies have found that video game play can have positive effects, such as improved cognitive abilities and stress relief (Granic, Lobel, & Engels, 2014).

Rather than video games being the primary cause of violence, research suggests that other factors, such as mental health issues, family environment, and socioeconomic status, play a more significant role in shaping aggressive behavior (Ferguson & Kilburn, 2010). For example, a study by Ferguson and Kilburn (2010) found that delinquency, depression, and antisocial personality traits were more predictive of youth violence than video game exposure.

Contrary to the notion that video games contribute to an increase in violence, the rate of youth violence in the United States has actually decreased over the past few decades, coinciding with the rise in popularity of video games (Ferguson, 2015). This trend suggests that video games are not a primary driver of violent behavior and that other factors, such as improved social programs and law enforcement, may be contributing to the decline in violence.

Cross-cultural research further undermines the claim that video games cause violence. Countries such as South Korea and Japan, which have high rates of video game consumption, have lower rates of violent crime compared to the United States (Ferguson, 2015). This international comparison suggests that video game exposure does not necessarily translate into increased violence, and that cultural, societal, and legislative factors may play a more significant role in shaping violent behavior.


Critics of the position that video games do not cause violence often point to laboratory studies that have found short-term increases in aggressive thoughts or behaviors following exposure to violent video games (Anderson et al., 2010). However, these studies have been criticized for their methodological limitations, such as small sample sizes, artificial settings, and a focus on short-term effects rather than long-term outcomes (Ferguson, 2015).

Moreover, some argue that the gaming industry's financial interest in defending video games may influence the research on the topic. While it is important to consider potential conflicts of interest, the growing body of independent research from various disciplines, including psychology, sociology, and criminology, supports the conclusion that video games do not cause violence (Ferguson, 2015).

Another counterargument is the moral panic perspective, which suggests that societal fears about new media, such as video games, are often overblown and unfounded (Markey & Ferguson, 2017). Historical examples, such as the concern over comic books in the 1950s and rock music in the 1980s, demonstrate that new forms of media are often initially met with suspicion and blame for societal ills before eventually being accepted as part of mainstream culture (Markey & Ferguson, 2017).


In conclusion, the evidence supporting the notion that video games cause violence is inconsistent and often flawed, while a growing body of research indicates that video games are not a significant factor in causing aggressive behavior. By shifting the focus away from video games and toward more relevant factors, such as mental health, family environment, and socioeconomic status, society can better address the root causes of violence and develop effective prevention strategies. Future research should continue to explore the potential positive effects of video games and the complex interplay of factors contributing to aggressive behavior.


Anderson, C. A., Shibuya, A., Ihori, N., Swing, E. L., Bushman, B. J., Sakamoto, A., ... & Saleem, M. (2010). Violent video game effects on aggression, empathy, and prosocial behavior in Eastern and Western countries: A meta-analytic review. Psychological Bulletin, 136(2), 151-173.

Ferguson, C. J. (2015). Do angry birds make for angry children? A meta-analysis of video game influences on children's and adolescents' aggression, mental health, prosocial behavior, and academic performance. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 10(5), 646-666.

Ferguson, C. J., & Kilburn, J. (2010). Much ado about nothing: The misestimation and overinterpretation of violent video game effects in Eastern and Western nations: Comment on Anderson et al. Psychological Bulletin, 136(2), 174-178.

Granic, I., Lobel, A., & Engels, R. C. (2014). The benefits of playing video games. American Psychologist, 69(1), 66-78.

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Markey, P. M., & Ferguson, C. J. (2017). Moral panics over media: The scientific perspective on the alleged harmful effects of violent video games on aggression. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 46(2), 271-283.

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Cite this Essay

The Impact of Video Games on Violence. (2024, March 25). GradesFixer. Retrieved April 20, 2024, from
“The Impact of Video Games on Violence.” GradesFixer, 25 Mar. 2024,
The Impact of Video Games on Violence. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 20 Apr. 2024].
The Impact of Video Games on Violence [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2024 Mar 25 [cited 2024 Apr 20]. Available from:
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