A study performed by the University of Rochester has reached the conclusion that people who play videogames of the first-person shooting ilk have faster reaction times than those who do not. Researchers on the project tested two groups of people, having one group play 50 hours of Call of Duty 2 and Unreal Tournament while the other played fifty hours of The Sims 2. Following this, both groups performed simple tasks to test how quickly and accurately they could respond to visual and auditory information.
On average, the players of the first-person shooters were 25% faster while remaining just as accurate as the players of The Sims 2.
My initial reaction to this was, "duh, why did we spend money on this?" But while it's something that players of videogames are probably well aware of, the general public who likes to demonize games may not yet have received the memo. Anytime someone gets to publicly say something positive about videogames which might show some of the benefits is okay by me.
The study will be published in an upcoming edition of the journal Current Biology.