Too Much Free Time

by Carlo Longino

See, Video Games Can Be Deadly

from the video-killed-the-game-star dept

The recent Grand Theft Auto furor was but the latest manifestation of activists pointing fingers at video games for corrupting youth and turning them into violent sex-crazed maniacs. Those activists will probably feel vindicated by the news coming out of South Korea that video games "killed" a man there: apparently the guy had been playing online games in a net cafe pretty much non-stop for 50 hours, with breaks only to go to the bathroom and take brief naps, then suffered heart failure caused by exhaustion. $10 says if it happened in the US, somebody would be suing the video game makers for creating games so addictive that somebody would want to play non-stop for 50 hours, rather than questioning the intelligence or sanity of somebody that would want to sit and play games long enough to kill themselves.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. identicon
    dorpus, Aug 9th, 2005 @ 10:25am

    Increasing Lower Bounds

    As time progresses, video game makers will continue to figure out ways to make their products more addicting. They will use their expertise of psychology, game theory, neurology, etc., to increase the proportion of people who will become hooked, to the detriment of their health. At what point does it become a public health problem?

    Earlier generations of cigarette makers made terrible cigarettes, but they learned how to make them more addicting by improving the taste, increasing the nicotine levels, and increasing the sophistication of their advertising.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    mattyatty, Aug 9th, 2005 @ 10:53am


    $10 says if it was in the US nobody would be suing the video game company because all games come with warnings to take regular breaks.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    spam, Aug 9th, 2005 @ 11:50am

    Re: $10

    Sadly, all the warnings in the world don't stop the hoards of slobbering, ravenous lawyers that live in the United States.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    Dirk Wessels, Aug 9th, 2005 @ 4:30pm

    What was that game

    Does anybody know the name of that game..
    I can imagine that some online games can be very addictive because it involves real people.
    And very tiring, because people are playing it 24 hours all over the world..
    In some games I have seen that you need to keep playing so you don't lose your game-money, game-posessions or game-territory. The best way to win it is to play long, long times..
    These games could help a bit by restricting access for maximum of 12 hours a day, or by making it easy to cooperate with someone who does supervise your game-business during the times that you have to work or sleep..
    Can even do great social things ;-)

    Some games do it a bit better:
    In one Role-playing game (baldur's gate) I have seen this userfriendly tip: "while your characters don't need to sleep or eat, you do".

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    mattyatty, Aug 11th, 2005 @ 7:41am

    Re: What was that game

    he "had been playing online battle simulation games" according to cnet news.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    Scott, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 7:48am

    No Subject Given

    Probably Halo 2......I cant put that game down once I start and I have lost alot of sleep because of it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    scythe, Aug 31st, 2005 @ 2:32pm

    No Subject Given

    god forbid a video game be addictive.

    People get addicted to all kinds of things, these MMO games trigger a social part of our brains that we find very important. Really the way to get these manufacturers to limit the time someone can spend on a server is to limit the amount they can charge for server time. Right now they WANT you to spend as much time as possible on the server.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. identicon
    allie, Jul 16th, 2006 @ 5:13pm

    WHAT,who would do that thats stupid

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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