Ballard, M. E., & Wiest, J. R. (1996). Mortal Kombat ™: The effects of violent videogame play on males’ hostility and cardiovascular responding. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 26 (8), 717-730.

Abstract:  Examined cardiovascular reactivity (CVR) and hostility among 30 male undergraduates (aged 18-23 yrs), after either nonviolent (billiards) or 1 of 2 levels of violent videogame play using Mortal Kombat ® (MK). A computer videogame system was used for the videogame stimuli. Systolic BP, diastolic BP, and heart rate were monitored using an automatic electro-sphygmomanometer and an adult size BP cuff positioned on the nondominant arm. The hostility questionnaire was composed of items from the Adjective Checklist. Ss who played MK1 or MK2 had higher heart rate reactivity than those who played billiards. Ss who played MK2 showed greater systolic BP reactivity than those who played MK1 or billiards. Ss who played MK2 scored higher on the hostility measures than those who played MK1, who in turn scored higher than those who played billiards. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2004 APA, all rights reserved)