Ballard, M., Visser, K., & Jocoy, K. (2012). Social context and video game play: Impact on cardiovascular and affective responses. Mass Communication & Society,15(6), 875-898. doi:10.1080/15205436.2011.632106

We examined if cardiovascular and affective responding to video game play changed across social context or with game content. Male participants (13–22 years old) played a violent or nonviolent video game. Each participant played the game individually, competitively against a male partner, and cooperatively with the partner. There was no effect of social condition on heart rate (HR) or diastolic blood pressure (DBP). Participants had significantly higher systolic BP (SBP) when playing individually and competitively than when playing cooperatively, probably because play was more continuous. There was no impact of game type for HR or SBP. DBP was significantly higher for participants who played the violent game, perhaps because participants found the violent game more exciting and enjoyable. Participants who played the violent game rated the experimenters more positively than those who played the nonviolent game. Participants found game play more exciting, enjoyable, stressful, and frustrating, but less boring and relaxing, when they played competitively or cooperatively than when they played individually. The results are discussed in terms of the general aggression model. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)