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There’s plenty of re­search around to in­di­cate that play­ing vi­o­lent video games can lead to vi­o­lence in real life.

So I’ve been pleas­antly sur­prised to see that any screen time some of the coun­try kids at my lo­cal school are get­ting seems to be filled with a farm­ing simulator pro­gramme.

If you thought mow­ing the lawns was bor­ing, th­ese ma­chin­ery-mad kids are perched in front of a screen watch­ing a com­puter gen­er­ated per­son do the job, or test­ing the lim­its of the lat­est trac­tors as they plough up an imag­ined hill, com­plete with com­men­tary. Se­ri­ously.

From what I can tell they have to earn points by sell­ing their fin­ished prod­uct, which means they can buy or lease equip­ment or up­grade to big­ger mod­els of what they al­ready have.

There are ben­e­fits to this they’re learn­ing about run­ning a farm and op­er­at­ing a busi­ness, which can’t all be bad.

Much bet­ter than crash­ing cars or shoot­ing cops, I hope.

Rachael Kelly

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