Playing video games could have a positive impact on a person’s wellbeing, scientists at the University of Oxford have claimed.
The recent study focused on players of two fairly popular games: the social sim ‘Animal Crossing’ and the third-person shooter ‘Plants vs. Zombies: Battle for Neighborville’. The results of the study revealed that people who tend to play more video games reported greater well-being than those who had a comparatively lower playtime.
This is the first study of its kind that took into account not the self-reported data by the users, but the actual playtime data. The self-reported data can often be found to be far from the actual values, and thus, may cause an error in the overall research.
“This is about bringing games into the fold of psychology research that’s not a dumpster fire,” Andrew Przybylski, lead researcher, said. “This lets us explain and understand games as a leisure activity.”
He further said, “…this shows that if you play four hours a day of Animal Crossing, you’re a much happier human being, but that’s only interesting because all of the other research before this is done so badly”
Przybylski might also be continuing his research on video games. “I’m very confident that if the research goes on, we will learn about the things that we think of as toxic in games,” he said, “and we will have evidence for those things as well.”