Here's one of the oddest research studies I have come across in a long time involving gamers. According to research from Nottingham Trent University (UK) and Stockholm University (Sweden) some gamers are so immersed in the games they play that when they stop they transfer their experiences into the real world. Researchers are calling this odd phenomenon "Game Transfer Phenomena," or "GTP."
The most extreme examples of GTP involve players claiming that they reach for a "search button" when looking for someone in a crowd or see energy bars near people's heads. Some of the players surveyed also claimed that they felt the need to press buttons even when a controller was not in their hands or they would visualize menus of topics to think about.
"We believe this is the first study to attempt to explore game transfer phenomena, and these initial findings have proved extremely interesting," said Professor Mark Griffiths, one of the report's authors. "Almost all the players reported some type of GTP, but in different ways and with varying degrees of intensity. We are now following this up with a further study of a much larger number of gamers."
"A recurring trend suggests that intensive gaming may lead to negative psychological, emotional or behavioural consequences, with enormous implications for software developers, parents, policy makers and mental health professionals," he added.
The research was conducted by researchers at Nottingham Trent University and Stockholm University and involved 42 players ages 15-21 years-old. The study will be published in the next issue of the International Journal of Cyber Behaviour, Psychology and Learning.