The games of life

July 13, 2007

Online computer games enhance rather than constrict young people's imagination, new research suggests. Simon Bradford and Nic Crowe of Brunel University conducted a three-month study of 13 to 16-year olds playing Runescape, a game that has more than more than 9 million active participants worldwide. In contrast to critics of young people's use of technology and a growing "bedroom culture", the researchers say the games offer young people a chance to explore their identity by changing gender, race or ability, and to experience opportunities that they may not have access to in the real world.

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