Sunday, June 09, 2019

Cognitive abilities of action video game and role-playing video game players: Data from a massive open online course. - PsycNET


Numerous studies have demonstrated that regularly playing action video games (AVGPs) is associated with increased cognitive performance. Individuals who play role-playing video games (RPGs) have usually been excluded from these studies. This is because RPGs traditionally contained no action components and were thus not expected to influence cognitive performance. However, modern RPGs increasingly include numerous action-like components. We therefore examined whether current RPG players (RPGPs) perform similar to action video game players (AVGPs) or nonvideo game players (NVGPs) on two cognitive tasks. Self-identified AVGPs (N = 76), NVGPs (N = 77), and RPGPs (N = 23) completed two online cognitive tasks: A useful field of view (UFOV) task and a multiple-object tracking task (MOT). The UFOV task measures the ability to deploy visuospatial attention over a large field of view while dividing one's attention between a central and a peripheral task. The MOT task measures the ability to use attentional control to dynamically refresh information in working memory. RPGPs performed similar to AVGPs and better than NVGPs on both tasks. However, patterns of covariation (e.g., gender and age) presented obstacles to interpretation in some cases. Our study is the first to demonstrate that RPGPs show similar cognitive performance to AVGPs. These findings suggest that regularly playing modern RPGs may enhance visuospatial abilities. However, because the current study was purely cross-sectional, intervention studies will be needed to assess causation. We discuss the implications of this finding, as well as considerations for how gamers are classified going forward. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)

No comments: