Poké­mon GO not so so­cial af­ter all, re­search re­veals

The Mercury - - OPINION & ANALYSIS -

IT IS THE vi­ral smart­phone game that led hordes of com­puter gamers out into the real world with phones held aloft as they com­peted with each other.

But new re­search sug­gests Poké­mon GO – which its de­sign­ers cre­ated to make gam­ing more so­cia­ble – may ac­tu­ally be putting play­ers at risk of “pave­ment rage” as they take part.

The study, which mon­i­tored the emo­tional re­sponses of peo­ple as they took part in the aug­mented re­al­ity game, has re­vealed a sur­pris­ingly anti-so­cial as­pect of Poké­mon GO.

Anal­y­sis showed play­ers ex­pe­ri­ence un­con­scious spikes in anger and frus­tra­tion when they en­counter other mem­bers of the pub­lic while hunt­ing down the fic­tional char­ac­ters in the game.

The re­search also re­vealed just how im­mer­sive the game could be – with one par­tic­i­pant in the study al­most walk­ing into the path of an on­com­ing truck.

Bio­met­ric sen­sors showed the player was to­tally ab­sorbed in the game un­til an­other mem­ber of the pub­lic who alerted them to the dan­ger, which caused their heart rate to rise rapidly.

Adam Simp­son, a neu­ro­science an­a­lyst at Sen­sum, the com­pany that de­vel­oped the emo­tion sens­ing tech­nol­ogy, said their re­sults sug­gested that Poké­mon GO was not as so­cial and in­ter­ac­tive as it had been claimed to be. – Daily Mail

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