Feeds

Want to be a better marksman? Play shooting games

Resident Evil 4 really is good training for the apocalypse

Security for virtualized datacentres

Gamers who play shooting games have improved accuracy when firing a weapon in real life, a new study has found. They're also more likely to aim for the head, apparently.

Researchers from Ohio State University asked 151 college students a series of personality assessment questions related to guns and gaming habits, before putting them in front of one of three videogames.

This was split between a violent shooter, Resident Evil 4; a non-violent shooter, Wii Play; and a non-violent game without any firearms, Super Mario Galaxy.

Resident Evil 4

Who you calling a psychopath?

The first two were played with either a standard controller or a pistol-shaped motion controller.

Following a 20-minute spell with their given game, participants took to the shooting range and fired real bullets at mannequins with no instruction other than to try and hit the target.

It turns out that those folk who'd played Resident Evil 4, which rewards points for headshots, continued to aim for the head, with an average of seven cranial hits each. This group - which had all used a pistol-shaped motion controller - were also the most accurate when it came to body shots.

People who'd played Mario were the least accurate in all departments and together managed a lowly average of two headshots.

The Wii Play players, or those gaming on a control pad regardless of the title, drew results which sat in the middle.

Super Mario Galaxy

Who needs weapons, when you can have... flowers

When the researchers looked deeper into the gaming habits of each individual, they found that those who regularly played violent videogames, racked up more hits than the less experienced of their group.

“The more frequently one plays violent shooting games, the more accurately one fires a realistic gun and aims for the head, although we can’t tell from this study which factor is the cause,” said Professor Brad Bushman, co-author of the study, which will be published in the Communication Research journal.

While videogames are said to lower aggression overall, an improvement on shot accuracy is unsurprising after playing such games, really.

After all, the Army invests heavily in videogame training programs, and most of us think those guys know what they're doing. Don't we? ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
PEAK APPLE: iOS 8 is least popular Cupertino mobile OS in all of HUMAN HISTORY
'Nerd release' finally staggers past 50 per cent adoption
Tim Cook: The classic iPod HAD to DIE, and this is WHY
Apple, er, couldn’t get the parts for HDD models
Apple spent just ONE DOLLAR beefing up the latest iPad Air 2
New iPads look a lot like the old one. There's a reason for that
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
Lawyers mobilise angry mob against Apple over alleged 2011 Macbook Pro crapness
We suffered 'random bouts of graphical distortion' - fanbois
Caterham Seven 160 review: The Raspberry Pi of motoring
Back to driving's basics with a joyously legal high
Back to the ... drawing board: 'Hoverboard' will disappoint Marty McFly wannabes
Buzzing board (and some future apps) leave a lot to be desired
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
How to simplify SSL certificate management
Simple steps to take control of SSL certificates across the enterprise, and recommendations centralizing certificate management throughout their lifecycle.