Nowadays, video games and online games are becoming an integral part of childhood amongst kids irrespective of country and religion. But then, violence and sexually offensive content are served in the midst of action-packed gameplay, which can cause a dangerous and devastating effect on kids’ personality and mental development.
Gaming industry is booming but the pathetic fact is that no any gaming company concern about the effect and impact caused by their so-called action games. In the US, recent incidences involving violence and shooting in school premises have shown the dark side of kids’ addiction toward video and online games. Here are some interesting facts regarding games penetration in the US society:
- About 155 million Americans play video games
- Around 51 percent of the US households own a dedicated game console
- About 62 percent of most frequent gamers use PC for playing games
- About 84 percent of parents are aware of ESRB (Entertainment Software Rating Board), but around 69 percent of parents regularly check game’s rating prior to purchase
Young gamers get trapped in the strategy of promoting violence and nudity to make games more addictive. Diehard online gamers face the bitter consequences in terms of higher stress, confusion, and mental disturbances. At times, they become victims of depression also.
From Xbox 360 to Wii and from Stream Machine to PlayStation, every gaming console requires parental guidance to an extent, but unfortunately parents don’t bother about video game consoles as they want to keep their kids away from more dangerous online games.
Craving for M-rated games- a dangerous trend
Nowadays, more and more kids are getting attracted toward M-rated games. As per ESRB norms, M (Mature) rating is given to the games that have content mostly suitable for persons ages 17 and above. Games that have intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language fall under this category. Craving for playing such games is steadily increasing among kids and becoming a big reason to worry for parents. Following are some of the reasons for increasing such craving in kids:
- Utter curiosity: Curiosity knows no limit in kids. They want to know just everything, and this curiosity leads them to M-rated games that have extreme violence along with a strong language. Another possible reason could be be imitative nature. Kids tend to copy the style of their favorite game heroes and for this reason they get addicted to M-rated games.
- Forbidden fruit is ever sweet: At times, parents forcefully restrict their kids to E-rated (E for Everyone) games. This restriction leads them to try M-rated games. Also, kids get pleasure in doing something without getting noticed by parents. In other words, M-rated games are more popular among kids because they are forbidden.
- Lack of interaction with parents: Parents usually can’t spare enough time for their kids in a hefty schedule. In such scenario, their interaction with kids is reduced. As a result, emotional distance between them is gradually increased. Disappointed and annoyed with parents, kids find their companions in M-rated games. At times, parents may forget that some of the video games are also M-rated, which leads their kids to get addicted with such games.
- Deteriorating social environment: These days, social environment surrounding us is rapidly deteriorating. Children also feel that but they can’t express their feelings. Also, they get stress while making attempts to adjust with such environment. This feeling leads them to playing M-rated games as an escape mechanism.
- Sheer excitement: Adolescence is full of excitement. M-rated games give pleasure of doing something extraordinary by destroying evil. Extreme violence in such games satisfies sheer excitement and kids get addicted to them.
We can mention other reasons as well for increasing craze of M-rated games in kids. Today, it is important for the parents to keep their children away from such games. Cordial interaction and proper care can help them to serve this objective.