Could video games make you a better driver?

A study from the University of Toronto shows those who play first-person shooting games can significantly improve their brain activity – and consequently become better drivers.

Researchers tested 25 participants who had never tried video games before. The test subjects were split into two control groups, with 16 playing first-person shooters and nine using 3D puzzle games.

After a total of ten hours gaming, in sessions lasting no longer than two hours, those who played shooters demonstrated improved visual attention.

Professor Ian Spence, University of Toronto, said this skill is crucial in many important everyday activities.

He said, “Studies in different labs, including here at the University of Toronto, have shown that action video games can improve selective visual attention, such as the ability to quickly detect and identify a target in a cluttered background.

 “It's necessary for things such as driving a car, monitoring changes on a computer display, or even avoiding tripping while walking through a room with children's toys scattered on the floor.”

However if you are into mystery games, prepare to be disappointed – the 3D puzzle group did not display any improved brain functions.  

Photo © Psycho AI via Flickr Under Creative Commons Licence

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