Violent Video Games: Popularity & Impact on Teens - Essay Sample

Published: 2023-09-16
Violent Video Games: Popularity & Impact on Teens - Essay Sample
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Video games Violence
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 926 words
8 min read


In recent times, violent video games have gained significant popularity among teenagers and have become an integral part of their lives. These games involve mass and aimless killing, shooting, and slaughtering of people. They have an extended set of weapons, including blocks of wood, guns, and knives (Anderson et al., 143). Players' pleasure comes from active engagement and learning and mastering the skills as they play, which allows them to advance to higher and more intriguing levels. Players identify with the killer, and the games reward aggressive behaviors with catchy phrases, such as 'nice shot.' (Shao et al., 384) Most teenagers are drawn to the associated pleasure of these games and spend excessive time on them. Nevertheless, violent video games have adverse effects, such as normalizing socially unacceptable behaviors and causing psychosocial problems; hence teenagers should not be allowed to play such games.

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Psychosocial Problems

Violent video games lead to psychosocial problems. Many of these games show that all people should be handled with violence regardless of their status. Teenagers who play such games are likely to be less empathetic and could be unwilling to help people who are suffering (Anderson et al., 146). Besides, a teen could begin taking the characters in the games as role models and begin aping their behaviors. Such teenagers are likely to portray behavioral problems such as becoming aggressive and using obsessive language. Thus they could become more vulgar to their peers besides getting isolated, which could have long term psychological effects. Such teenagers are likely to have problems relating to others in their later life stages.

Violent games could lead to the acceptance of socially and ethically unacceptable behaviors. The general setting of these games is an extremely aggressive and bloody aura. Killing is depicted as a rewarding activity where picking a weapon and murdering victims leads to a higher score (Shao et al., 384). Such notions could be integrated into their minds where they see murder as a laudable social norm. Besides, the games condone and praise disrespecting authorities since escaping or shooting police officers adds a player's points (Anderson et al., 144). The players could, therefore, be molded to see authority figures as the wrong people. Subsequently, with increased exposure to video games, teens cease to revere the law, lack respect for human life, and become insensitive to violent acts.

Physiological Problems

Violent video games could cause physiological problems among teenagers. As one plays, they experience psychological arousal, which is evident through intensified feelings of anger, increased heart rate, and blood pressure. Their brains could interpret the killing scenes as real, and they could think they are happening within their environs, which increases their heartbeat rates and could eventually cause heart and blood pressure illnesses (Anderson et al., 145). Besides, spending excessive time playing video games implies more time is spent sitting, hence less time for physical exercise and sleep. Such tendencies could lead to vast issues, including obesity, skeletal disorders, and sleep deprivation. Thus the games have adverse effects on the overall wellbeing of teenagers.

Poor conflict resolution skills could result from excess exposure to violent video games. In the games, all feelings are expressed through aggression and hostility, and violence is depicted as the only way to solve problems. Consequently, such teens may not appreciate the communication and could lose the art, hence resorting to physical abuse whenever irked by their peers or siblings (Shao et al., 384). The games also increase hostile behavior and irate thoughts while reducing empathy and compassion. As such, teenagers who play violent video games are likely to be inclined to being hurtful when irritated and having less kindheartedness for others (Anderson et al., 143). Hence they may respond to conflict settings through violence instead of communication with the involved parties.

Nevertheless, several positive effects are associated with video games. These games allow teens to improve their computer literacy besides enhancing the players' manual dexterity. One understands how to use computers and related gadgets besides having enhanced eye-hand coordination. Video games also offer an ideal option for relaxing a teen's body after a long day at school or relieving any angry feelings they could be harboring (Prot et al., 651). Another counter-argument is that teenagers who play video games tend to be sharper and perform better at school. Moreover, there is no research showing that violent video games are the actual cause of violence among teenagers (Prot et al., 648). These games are often a result of a teen liking violence; hence they are not the cause of aggressiveness.


Overall, the adverse effects of violent video games are more than the linked positive impacts; hence these games should not be allowed among teenagers. The games cause a wide range of behavioral, health, and psychosocial problems. Besides, players become dehumanized and lack empathy besides having poor conflict resolution skills. Players also adopt unhealthy lifestyles and could experience adverse effects in their later life stages. Although teens could accrue some benefits from these games, the negative effects outdo the positive ones and affect both the player and the people around them. As such, despite violent video games becoming a central part of modern teenage life, they are more deleterious to adolescents. Teenagers should, therefore, not be allowed to play such games.

Works Cited

Anderson, Craig A., et al. "Screen violence and youth behavior." Pediatrics 140.Supplement 2 (2017): S142-S147.

Prot, Sara, et al. "Video Games:: Good, Bad, or Other?." Pediatric Clinics 59.3 (2012): 647-658.

Shao, Rong, and Yunqiang Wang. "The relation of violent video games to adolescent aggression: An examination of moderated mediation effect." Frontiers in Psychology 10 (2019): 384.

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