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Aim, Shoot, Deplete: Playing Video Games Depletes Self-Regulatory Resources

2015-01-01
Harma, Mehmet
Aktan, Timucin
Çağıltay, Kürşat
Two experiments investigated whether playing video games impaired subsequent self regulation. In Experiment 1 (n = 43), participants either played a video game (i.e., Quake III) for 10 min or just browsed the Internet for the same time interval. Participants in the video game condition had slower response time than participants in the no-game condition. In Experiment 2 (n = 94), either participants played Quake III, or watched Quake III game scenes, or they were asked to suppress their thought for 10 min. Participants in the game-playing condition and thought suppression condition showed less persistence on a given unsolvable anagram task than participants in the game-watching condition. Overall, the findings confirm the idea that playing video game consumes self-regulatory sources due to active instead of passive responses in a highly demanding game environment.