Console driving games leave you feeling more aggressive than violent shoot 'em ups, says a new study.
Previous studies have linked violence in video games to aggression. However, the new study has suggested that video games don't have to be violent to trigger an emotional response.
It found that driving games could activate more brain regions involved in emotional processing than shoot 'em ups.
For the study, Simon Goodson and Sarah Pearson of the University of Huddersfield in the UK recruited 30 adults aged between 18 and 45 to play either a competitive driving game, a shoot 'em up or virtual table tennis against computer-generated competitors.
Brain activity, heart rate and breathing were all monitored during the game, and a questionnaire afterwards assessed their levels of anger, hostility and aggression.
The volunteers scored normally for aggression after playing the driving and shoot 'em up games, while those playing the table tennis game scored as slightly less aggressive than the average for the volunteers.
However, when it came to brain activity, the driving game caused a significant increase in the temporal lobe, an area of the brain linked to emotional processing.
"It cannot be assumed that aggression is solely related to violent content," New Scientist quoted Goodson, as saying.
The study was presented at a British Psychological Society meeting in Brighton last week.