Does PUBG cause violent behaviour in Malaysian youths?

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds aka PUBG, got dragged into the spotlight as a contributor to violence among youths that could propel them towards terrorism. Negeri Sembilan Mufti Datuk Mohd Yusof Ahmad urge the government to consider banning the game because of its impact on youths.


In case PUBG doesn’t sounds familiar, it’s an online multiplayer battle royale game where 100 players are airdropped onto a huge field to kill each other until only one remains.


The Mufti says that the game was implanting itself into the minds of youths about inciting war, and that it was also inappropriate for Muslims to indulge in these kinds of video games; citing the attack on Muslims in New Zealand as a consequence of it.


“The government should pay attention as gaming is now included as part of e-sports… It is not impossible that firearms may be easily accessed one day” – Negri Sembilan Mufti, Datuk Mohd Yusof Ahmad


All that being said, do violent video games ultimately bring out violence in someone? On the other hand, there’re many contradictory studies done in the past, but the results either rest on the games causing aggression, or having no impact.


A longitudinal study claims violent video games cause increased physical aggression among children, whereby it also has a generalizing effect across all genders and cultures. The study suggests that violent video games is a risk factor that should be reduced.


Playing the defence on this debate is Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq. He claims that extremism and acts of violence have been carried out without the help of online games. He also says that we should condemn what happened in New Zealand instead of finding fault to blame.


“This (the incident) is bigger than that. We have to pay our respects to those who have lost their lives but don’t be too quick to blame online games.” – Youth and Sports Minister, Syed Saddiq


Recently, a study by University of Oxford published in Forbes claims there is no link between violent video games and aggressions in teenagers. The study, which used objective and subjective data to measure aggression instead of self-reported feelings of aggression seems to be a better judge of the video games’ impact.


In that case, if video game violence is only one probably factor, there might be multiple possible causes to elicit the violence in someone. So, we shouldn’t really be too quick to judge and one should do more research on the causes of violent behaviour.


Counter-Terrorism Division principal assistant director Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay followed up by saying they aren’t taking action until the MCMC greenlights any action. Therefore, we can’t deny the possibility of shooter games like PUBG, PUBG Mobile, CS:GO and others will be banned in the future.