Video games have a positive effect on that mental health, according to a study by Oxford University. For this purpose, the playing time data for the age-neutral games “Animal Crossing” and “Plants versus Zombies: Battle for Neighborville” were evaluated.
“The study shows that if you play Animal Crossing for 4 hours a day, you’re a much happier person,” she says Study author Andrew Przybylski. It is one of the first studies to use actual game time data. In previous studies, users themselves disclosed their playing time, as the researcher explains. However, these figures correlated little with the duration actually played.
Play for fun
The influence of a game on the psyche could, however, depend on the attitude of the player. Przybylski differentiates between “intrinsic” enjoyment, in which you play a game out of pleasure and your own volition, and “extrinsic” behavior, i.e. when someone has the feeling that others are incited or forced to play, reports The Guardian. According to the study, the latter makes people less satisfied.
Concrete game time data should in future also make it possible to examine excessive computer or video games, which the WHO has classified as online gambling addiction, more critically and in more detail.
Last year, the researchers at Oxford University also demonstrated, among other things, that there is no connection between violence in video games and violence in reality.