When you’re in the middle of a video game, the heartbreak of failure and the euphoria of victory are both on the cards. Either option is just a few button presses away, the palms get sweaty, eyebrows furrowed, and the classic, universal symbol for 'gamer stress' - the ol' sit forward in your chair.
The video games that got players riled up the most have been researched and revealed and I didn't see it coming but y'know what? It makes a whole bunch of sense.
An online gameing website rounded up 14 “active gamers”, got them to play 16 of the most well-known vidya games, and measured their heart rate while they played them.
Numero uno belongs to the one and only Mario Kart, with players controlling the loveable Nintendo characters on wheels increasing their heart rate by 32.81%.
The #2 spot belongs to the quintessential flat game FIFA, with players seeing a 31.25% heart rate increase. FIFA, like no other game, can cause hurling abuse and your closest friend after he scores the sweatiest, jammiest goal you’ve ever seen in your life and then makes you watch the replay, a deserved placing.
Call of Duty is the third most stressful game, with players’ heart rates rising by 29.69%. Thank campers, claymores, and “FUCKING LAG!” for this placing.
Dark Souls was #4, causing a heart rate increase of 28.13 over the same period. This game is so god damn difficult I completely get why people are stressed playing it.
Fortnite came in at #5, with an average heart rate increase of 26.56% over thirty minutes - chasing the Fortnite dub ain’t easy man.
A family game night can quickly turn into tantrums, bedtimes, and crying once someone is at the wrong end of too many blue shells. The fact that you’re never safe in the Mario Kart universe - last place can destroy first place’s chance of winning even from the back of the track - is what makes this game so fun yet so, so tense all the time.
Bonusfinder, the site behind the study, also studies which games have the most stressful moments i.e the sharpest sudden increase in heart rate.
Dark Souls was number one, because of the boss fights (98.44% heart rate increase). With Fall Guys coming at number two (95.11%) and Mario Kart (73.44%) Street Fighter (71.77%) and FIFA (67.19%) placing third, fourth, and fifth respectively.