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Do Racing Games Negatively Affect Driving Habits?

Do Racing Games Negatively Affect Driving Habits?

Once in a while, there are studies trying to prove that frequent users of first-person shooters are more likely to commit acts of violence or condone them but here’s something new – A study that links racing games to bad behaviour on real roads.

Conducted by Continental Tyre, the study polled 1000 racing-gamers and 1000 non-gamers from the ages of 17 to 39, questioning them about their driving habits.

In a nutshell, the results show that frequent users of racing games are more likely to pass red lights, get stopped by the police or be take risks. The study acknowledges that racing games do successfully teach practical skills though, as experienced gamers in average need less tries to pass their driving test.

“This is an interesting piece of research. It seems that while gamers develop useful skills and are more confident, they need to apply some balance with a sensible assessment of risk”, Continental Tyres safety expert Tim Bailey explained.  “Playing computer driving games means good concentration levels and improved reaction times, however, they can take more risks than non-gaming drivers, possibly due to the lack of real consequences in games.”

Keep in mind that this study was conducted with users off all kinds of (arcade) racing games and can’t be transferred 1 to 1 to the sim racing community. Still, do you think that your virtual driving experience has had an impact on your driving habits either good or bad?

The full results of the poll can be found below:

Graphic & Story via Kotaku

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