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Cheating in Video Games

According to a study done by PopCap Social Gaming Research, people who cheat on video games are three times more likely to cheat or steal in other areas of life. They also cheat on tests and on romantic partners.

The research is fairly fascinating. If you ask those who do NOT cheat at video games if they have cheated on a romantic partner, 15% say yes. However, if you ask those who DO cheat at video games if they have cheated on a romantic partner, 49% of them say yes. That's a staggering difference.

The ratios are even larger in other areas. Only 8% of those who play video games fairly have cheated on their taxes, while 43% of those who cheat at video games say they cheat on their taxes.

It's important to note here that the survey was not covering situations where users were using a guide or walkthrough to help them make progress. The "cheaters" in these cases were people who deliberately used outside software, like hacks, or illegal constructs like bots in order to circumvent the proper rules of the game.

So what does this say about people who want to avoid dating a cheater? Maybe a good first date strategy would be to relax in a living room with a fun game that has an option to cheat. Then casually suggest the idea of using that cheat, and see what the person says. If they are enthusiastically in favor of using the cheat, and fidelity is important to you, then it might be time to move on to your next option. It seems that the odds would be fairly high against you.

It does seem to make sense. A person who would feel morally opposed to cheating on a test at school would probably not cheat in other areas of life as well. A person who thinks it's fine to circumvent the rules in situation 1 probably also feels it's fine in situation 2.

What is your experience in life? Do you find the people who cheat in one area tend to have that same mindset in others? Or is there something special about video games, where what you choose to do there doesn't really matter in other areas of life?

Come on by our forums and let us know!

PopCap Original Study PDF

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