GAMERS are used to losing their virtual lives, but a violent turn has taken many real lives from the gaming community in recent years.
Video games have been the cause of many deadly disputes throughout the 21st century, including rageful arguments between teenagers and the violent murder of a TikTok star.
It was scientifically proven by the American Psychological Association in 2000 that violent video games can increase aggression in players.
The study has caused controversy over the years, even prompting research countering the original study.
No matter which side you’re on, it seems that the history of video games is intertwined with violence — both on and off of the screen.
Keep reading to learn about some of the lives that have been tragically taken over a dispute involving video games.
18-year-old Matthew Thane was shot and killed by 23-year-old Alexander Frank Baro, who reportedly drove 1,700 miles to enact the murder on August 18, 2020.
The two are said to have known each other through the Call of Duty gaming community.
Baro committed suicide on August 19, 2020, as police surrounded his home.
‘SWATTING’ PRANK GONE WRONG
Tyler Barriss, 25, was charged with involuntary manslaughter in 2018 for his role in a “swatting” incident that ended with 28-year-old Andrew Finch shot dead at his front door.
“Swatting” is making a prank call to emergency services that brings a dispatch of armed officers to a specific address.
Barriss placed a prank call reporting a hostage situation at Finch’s address, according to a police affidavit acquired by CNN.
Barriss told police that he made the call on behalf of another gamer who was upset at a teammate for accidentally killing him in a multi-player session of “Call of Duty: WWII.”
A person who claimed to be in the game told the police later that “the person gave the wrong address.”
After Barriss reported a hostage situation at Andrew Finch’s address in a call to Wichita Police, officers swarmed the Finch home and fatally shot him.
It’s not clear why the gamers chose Andrew Finch’s home. Finch was not involved in the online dispute, and his family reported that he did not play video games.
In 2019, two people were killed in a shooting in a synagogue in Halle, a city in East Germany.
The shooting was live-streamed on Twitch, an online video live-streaming service used primarily for gaming.
The video was 35 minutes long, according to CNBC.
“Twitch has a zero-tolerance policy against hateful conduct, and any act of violence is taken extremely seriously,” a Twitch spokesperson said.
“We are working with urgency to remove this content and permanently suspend any accounts found to be posting or reposting content of this abhorrent act.”
Early last year, a Brazilian gamer confessed to killing a female rival he met online playing Call of Duty: Mobile.
A gaming addict stabbed his father to death after he was asked to take a break from playing.