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Playing Video Games Can Actually Improve Your Wellbeing, Oxford Study Finds
By Thanussha Priyah, 17 Nov 2020
Image via Wachiwit / Shutterstock.com
It turns out that playing video games can actually be good for your wellbeing, according to a study from Oxford University.
The study involved a total of 3,274 gamers, all above 18 years old. It was focused on understanding players of Nintendo’s hit video game Animal Crossing: New Horizons, as well as EA’s shooter Plants Vs. Zombies: Battle for Neighborville, and was the first time university academics worked with actual gameplay data for research.
The researchers also found positive impacts tied with gaming as people who played more games reported having greater “wellbeing.”
The study’s lead researcher Andrew Przybylski said that the findings show “that if you play four hours a day of Animal Crossing, you’re a much happier human being.” Przybylski also pointed out the results were impressive only because previous studies were “done so badly.”
In the past, studies mainly focused on self-reported “guesstimates,” which seemed to fall short in matching reality.
On the other hand, this new study managed to work with actual play-time data, allowing the Oxford University team to match psychological inquiries with accurate records of time spent playing games. The study is yet to be peer-reviewed, however.
Though this seems like good news for video game players, the researchers emphasized that the findings do not deem video games solely as a good thing. Przybylski hopes to learn more about what “we think of as toxic in games” to garner evidence for the common negative stigma linked to gaming.
[via Science Focus, cover image via Wachiwit / Shutterstock.com]
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