How some people lose themselves in online gaming

  • Thread starter BenVitale
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In summary, The conversation discussed various cases of extreme gaming addiction, including a South Korean couple who let their real daughter starve to death while they raised a virtual child in a game. It also mentioned a woman who blamed an online game for her son's suicide and a man who was able to stop playing an addicting game and turn his life around. The article referenced shares how video games are designed to be addictive and how they can negatively impact one's life. The conversation also provided insight into why people become addicted to online games.
  • #1
Here's a weird and a very sad story:

A child dies while web-addict parents raise 'virtual' baby on Prius Online

A South Korean couple addicted to an internet game about raising a virtual child were arrested for neglecting their real three-month-old daughter and letting her starve to death

More ...

And, on BBC

they "lost their will to live a normal life" after losing their jobs.

He said they "indulged themselves online" to escape from reality
The game enables players to interact with Anima and as they do so, help her to recover her lost memory and develop emotions.
Physics news on
  • #3
That's really sad and I can only think of the parents as irresponsible.
  • #4
The baby girl died of malnutrition, a severe sign of neglect on the part of the parents.

The weird part is the parents played a game that involved the rearing of a virtual child.
  • #5
Tragic news from Korea yesterday: a couple allowed their three-month old infant to starve to death while they obsessively tended to a virtual baby in an online game. This follows on the famous report from a while back about the gamer who played so long he died from fatigue. These stories represent extreme cases, but there are many more people for whom a videogame addiction is a serious problem. I’m certainly not the first to note how games are specifically and rigorously designed to be addictive, and as the bodies–literally–start piling up, it’s only a matter of time before Joe Lieberman and his ilk are back on the Sunday morning talk shows with a proposal to ban or regulate addictive MMOs. Don’t think there aren’t already a dozen groups looking to cash in on the next new threat to “our precious children.” And this time they actually have real science on their side, unlike the crazy vaccine-autism nimrods who can move mountains with sheer conjecture and speculation...
  • #6
Here's another case: Addiction to the online game "EverQuest"

Dennis Bennett was failing his college classes, his marriage was in trouble, and he wasn't being much of a father to his 1-year-old son.

Dennis Bennett managed to stop playing playing the game "EverQuest"

But a Wisconsin woman has blamed "EverQuest" in the suicide late last month of her 21-year-old son, who had a history of mental health problems and was an obsessive "EverQuest" playe.

Dr. Timothy Miller, a Stockton, Calif., clinical psychologist. "I've seen a number of cases with 17- or 18-year-old males where they have a broadband (Internet) connection and they basically haven't left the house for years.

Source: When games stop being fun
  • #8
Greg Bernhardt said:

That was really good. Particularly this point:

Video game designer Erin Hoffman said it perfectly: "Addiction is not about what you DO, but what you DON'T DO because of the replacement of the addictive behavior." She was talking about how the attraction of a simple flash game like Bejeweled depends entirely on how badly you want to avoid doing the work you have open in the other window.
  • #10
I'm pretty much obsessed with online gaming, so I can probabily give an insight into what occurs.
First, you start playing. Then, you start meeting people. Then, you start playing with these people and you're in constant competition to get better. Moreover, some of these games have unlimited depths of strategy, there's no cap to how good you can get, so time investment directly correlates to how good you are compared to others. These online strategy games usually require in depth intellectual involvement and strategy formulation, this coupled with the requirement of teamwork can make it absolutely irresistable to some people.

Before you know it you're playing this awesome game with teammates formulating complex strategies, always trying to get better. Irresistable. It's not like these people are watching movies all day or just playing single player games, it's so different.

As for games like WoW that don't require strategy, that I cannot really understand. I guess it's online with real people completing quests and leveling up and discovering awesome stuff making you stronger, I guess that would be addictive.

What are the potential negative effects of losing oneself in online gaming?

Some potential negative effects of losing oneself in online gaming include decreased social interaction, neglecting responsibilities, and developing addictive behaviors. Additionally, excessive gaming can lead to physical health issues such as eye strain, neck and back pain, and carpal tunnel syndrome.

Why do some people become so immersed in online gaming?

There are various reasons why some individuals may become deeply immersed in online gaming. These reasons can include the desire for escapism, the need for social connection, the enjoyment of challenges and rewards, and the appeal of a sense of accomplishment and control.

What are some signs that someone may be losing themselves in online gaming?

Signs that someone may be losing themselves in online gaming can include neglecting personal hygiene, skipping meals or losing weight, experiencing sleep disturbances, and losing interest in previously enjoyed activities. Additionally, excessive gaming can result in difficulties in school or work, strained relationships, and financial problems.

How can someone prevent themselves from losing themselves in online gaming?

To prevent oneself from becoming too immersed in online gaming, it is important to set boundaries and establish a healthy balance between gaming and other activities. This can include setting a limit on gaming time, taking breaks, and engaging in other hobbies and interests. Seeking support from friends, family, or a therapist can also be helpful in managing gaming habits.

When does losing oneself in online gaming become a serious problem?

Losing oneself in online gaming can become a serious problem when it starts to negatively impact an individual's daily life, relationships, and overall well-being. If gaming habits are causing distress and interfering with important responsibilities, it may be a sign of a more serious issue and seeking professional help is recommended.