These games create a fantasy world that operates in real time and with real characters. These games are addictive by design, and for some people, the pull of the game-world becomes unhealthy and overwhelming.
Some elements of these games that lead to increasing time spent online include:
- The need to work with a team, an the desire to meet “responsibilities” in the game
- The desire to accomplish a quest and meet a goal
- The desire to get increased powers and rewards
- The never ending nature of a game that operates in real time
- Feelings of escapism when online, in game
Addicted gamers will play for marathon sessions, neglecting responsibilities and sometimes even neglecting personal care needs, such as bathing, sleeping or eating. In extreme cases, people have died while hunched at their keyboards. Although gaming addiction is infrequently talked about in America, both China and South Korea have called internet and gaming addictions major public health threats.
Page last updated Feb 07, 2011