Monday, December 28, 2015

Violent Game’s Contribution to Indonesia

Playing games are very common in today’s era. It usually used by people as a tool to refresh their mind after working and studying. According to a research conducted by the eMarketer, it is noted that there is 10% of Indonesian population playing digital games and the games market are predicted to be doubled by 2017. The behavior of playing digital game is becoming new trend in Indonesia in which sometimes; neglecting the content of the game itself. The Indonesian Intelligence Agency noted that some video games may contain violation and pornography. Those who are addicted to such games will potentially have deviate attitude, behavior, and character. Although video games may lead people to commit crime and violate others, there is some evidence which shows positive impact of playing violates games, especially for the youth in Indonesia.

Many people tend to believe that everything they heard and see will influence their behavior. This paradigm leads news media and researchers in the United States to have speculation about video games as the cause of many violation cases. This speculation begun due to the fact that shows 97% of kids under the age of 12-17 who are actively playing video games make the increasing number of bullying and violence towards women. Not only that, another tragedy also showed that Columbine shooting in 1999 happened in the same time with Seung Hui Cho’s case about killing 32 students and faculty. This paradigm becomes even stronger when most of the famous video games today are talking about battle. One of that famous games in 2015 is Mortal Kombat X, a game that published by Warner Bros. This game gives brutal experience and pushes its player to win the game by killing their opponent. Unfortunately, this fighting game is gaining a good review from game players and potentially expanded by a couple of years later. If this expansion continuously happened, game player will automatically learn on how to fight against each others in many more violation ways. Not only Mortal Kombat X which popular in today’s era, but also 33 popular Sega and Nintendo games in 1990s also contained violation. Interestingly, 80% of Sega and Nintendo were violent in nature and 21% of it was violence towards women.

In fact, there has been a lot of research about the impact of playing violent games. Most of the result of those researches shows that playing games which contains violation will increase people aggressiveness. One of the researches was done by Anderson and Dill by examining two studies on aggression-related variables. Study 1 found that there is positive relation between playing violent game and aggressive behavior either delinquency. It also examined the bad impact of losing time for study because of too much playing such games. Unfortunately, the result of study 2 was similar to study 1 which shows aggressive behavior and thought is increasing after playing violent games. Logically, video game will influence aggression-related feelings of anger or hostility of a person. When they watch and play violent games, the angriness will simultaneously increase rather than playing nonviolent games. It can be said that violation in game may become the provocateur to increase anger which makes gamer could not be relaxed while playing and become ambitious to win. They will also pay too much attention on how to win the game until sometimes; do not care about their surroundings. As the result, they will not only commit violate, but also become individual and have less time to do socialization towards others.

However, a research conducted by three graduate students in the University of Tokyo had contradictory result about aggressiveness. This research was mainly talking about long-term neuropsychological outcomes related to video game violence. Those graduate students noted about previous study conducted by Anderson and Dill which not clearly discussing about long-term aggressiveness level. They only stated that aggressiveness behavior will increase after playing violent games, nor telling the specific time and duration of being aggressive. When it comes to the research about long-term neuropsychological outcomes, the result shows aggressiveness has remained short-lived and lacked of long-term consequences. So, the level of being aggressive will gradually decrease due to some extension of time. In addition, a journal about a meta-analytic review has an interest result about aggression rates which are varies across countries and cultures, especially for western people compared to eastern people. This makes people could not generalize the aggression for each person across nations is merely the same. Therefore, it can be concluded that there are another factors that need to be considered before mentioning violent video game as the major cause of violent actions.

In the contrary of bad impact of playing violent games, Jordan Shapiro, a contributor in the Forbes site stated that playing violent games will give positive youth development in giving intrinsic motivation, cognitive effort, and cumulative effort to elicit initiative. The initiative could come when youth feel pressured to face challenges while playing the game. This challenge will push them to have more concentration and effort so that they will win the game. Not only that, the key point of initiative is the ability to sustain activity in order to find youth passion in the game world. In Indonesia, having passion to be the game developer is very valuable. As mentioned in, Indonesian government starts to realize the opportunity of the development of Indonesian game industries. They have already allocated 30 billion rupiahs to support the development and competitiveness of game industries either to prepare the roadmap. The roadmap itself will help to state the harmonized regulation, standardization, technology, distribution, and other industries facilities. Besides that, the government has also planned to prepare certification for people who have commitment to develop the games. Therefore, by understanding this opportunity, there is no needs to keep bad paradigm about games and give stigmatization on violate game until in the worst case; it is banned from the market.

In fact, playing violate game that become one of the most popular game in this era is important in order to learn and understand the trend and mechanism of how the game works. When youth have better understanding on how to implement and develop current famous games, they will be able to create their own market and increase their competitiveness in global games market. In Indonesia, there are around 8 game developers that are already competed in the global market. One of them is Kidalang which has already launched 2 game series; Sage Fusion and Sage Fusion 2. This start-up game developer which has violation content inside it has won 200,000 USSD from Tizen App Challenge. Besides Kidalang, Toge Productions is also having a great achievement by gaining 159 million users from all over the world. Not too different from Kidalang, Toge Production is also mainly talking about battle. One of their products is Infectonator: World Dominator and Planetary conflict. These two Indonesian game developers have proven that violate video games, in some extend is beneficial for industry and even a country. In the China-Indonesia Mobile Game Conference (CIMGC), Anton Soeharyo, the CEO of Touchten, underlined that there are 5 most-wanted applications in Google Play that has already successfully got 545,000 USD/month and 308,000 USD/month for App Store in 2014. These are a great potential of mobile game penetration in Indonesian market. When youth and game developers could maximize this opportunity, they will not only gain success for themselves but also take a part as contributors to increase Indonesian economic growth.

Another opportunity that can be seen in Indonesian game market is penetrating violent game which contains Indonesian cultural values. Lots of Indonesian hero stories have already been forgotten by most of Indonesian society, especially youth. As the consequence, they might gradually decrease their intention to know and preserve national hero stories of their own country. Therefore, in order to motivate them to have interest in hero stories, game developers could create game about battle to follow today's trend, but still included national cultural values to preserve Indonesian cultures. For example, they can modify Sage Fussion's story becomes Pattimura battle story. The costumes can be changed indto Indonesian hero's costume and replace the gun with bambu runcing as Indonesian traditional battle equipment. By having this kind of game, gamers will not only feel the enjoyment of playing game and consume violation, but also take one step further in preserving national culture.

In conclusion, people could not generalize violent game as the main cause of violation cases. It is clear that game violence is not the sole of aggression, but only one of several factors leading to it. As most of today’s games turned into violent games, people do not need to stigmatization these games only depend on its negative impact. However, they have to look this phenomenon into another perspective. When people are able to put themselves in the positive side of violent games, they will look opportunity on how these games could increase their economic condition and the economy of their country. 


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*this essay is written to accomplish EAP 3 (English for Academic Purposes) assignment about "Writing an argumentative essay" (in 3rd semester) 

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