Williams, Kevin Donald
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As both the popularity of video games and the reporting of teenage violent acts increase, much has been said regarding the ability of violent video games to influence aggression in their players. Yet, other factors in video games which may contribute to aggressive players have not been heavily discussed in the media or in academia. Using the General Aggression Model (GAM), a 2 X 2 factorial design was conducted with 150 male college undergraduates playing different video games to investigate the impact of 1) the violent content in video games and 2) frustration with playing the game on later measurements of aggressive affect and physiological arousal. Results showed that neither violent content nor frustration affected heart rate. Violent content did not affect blood pressure although frustration increased blood pressure. Individually, both violent content and frustration did increase scores on a scale designed to measure feelings of anger. The combination of violent content and frustration led to the highest scores on the anger instrument. Findings support the GAM and suggest that frustration with gameplay could be just as an effective means, if not more so, of influencing aggression within game players as exposure to violent content.