Violence

The record is clear: video games do not cause real-world violence. Leading independent research studies have found no evidence that video games trigger violent behavior.

Some critics unfortunately blame video games for violent behavior, especially after tragic episodes of gun violence in the U.S. This claim is unfounded and distracts from discussions around real solutions to America’s larger gun violence issue. Real-world evidence makes it clear that there is no causal link between video games and violent behavior. In study after study, leading independent researchers have found no scientific evidence that links video games and violence. The U.S. Supreme Court reached the same conclusion nearly a decade ago.

Most of the three billion video game players around the world enjoy the same video games—including those containing violent content. Despite this, violent offenses in foreign markets where those same video games are sold are far less common than they are in the U.S., suggesting that other factors (background of the individual, the availability of and access to guns, mental health considerations, etc.) are more relevant to understanding the cause of any particular offense.

The video game industry has a demonstrated, long-standing commitmentto ensuring that games, particularly those with violent themes, are used by people of the appropriate age and maturity level. Creating a positive, inclusive and safe experience for players of all ages is an essential priority of the video game industry. For more than 25 years, the industry has worked through the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) to ensure that consumers—especially parents and caregivers—have the resources, including voluntary age and content ratings, needed to make informed decisions about video games. The effectiveness of these efforts has been praised by the U.S. Supreme Court and U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

Related News and Resources

results in Perspectives and Media Violence.
  • Family Game Night with ESRB Senior Vice President Bill Garrity

    Perspectives /

    Learn more about why ESRB Senior Vice President Bill Garrity loves family game nights. "Playing together is quality time, full stop. We’re talking. We’re encouraging each other at times and competing at others. I’m sure I’ll miss it when they move out."

  • ESA Leadership Desk: Science Says Video Games Don’t Cause Real-World Violence

    Perspectives /

    Video games are about more than fun. They make us better thinkers, more creative, more curious, and bring us closer together. Thanks to the passion of video game developers, publishers, and players across the globe, the future of interactive entertainment is brighter than ever before.

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