Parents need to make their own choices before exposing children to violent video games. There is still speculation at the degree to which children may be harmed by playing violent video games. Studies in this matter do show that children tend to exhibit more aggressive behavior directly after playing violent video games, but many argue that few children exposed to such violence will grow up to be violent people.
There are few long-term studies that show correlations between violence in adults as directly tied to violent video games, or any type of exposure to violent media. Especially the games with extreme violence, that became popular in the 1990s, like Grand Theft Auto have not been around long enough to prove violent video games create aggressive adults.
However, studies on even E-rated (approved for “everyone”) games do show that children respond aggressively, especially right after playing a video game with any violence. Further, they do not simply mimic the violence of the game, like practicing karate kicks for example. They may go further and may hit, bite, pull hair, or otherwise attack those around them. The same results have also been found in children who watch e-rated television shows with so-called “fantasy” violence.