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There was a study done that suggested that 40% of WoW players are addicted. I believe it.
I'm going to disagree with the person who said that gaming addiction is not as destructive as addiction to drugs. Gaming addiction sure as all hell can cause you financial distress; you're buying new games constantly, or funneling money into a cash shop, or buying an endless amount of faction/server changes, or even end up quitting your job to play the video game more, which can lead to debt, bankruptcy, eviction, and poverty.
Also, saying that video gaming addiction is not really an addiction is false, or even just a matter of semantics. With video games we are rewarded (for example, clearing LFR might net you some gear. Or you even might end up getting achievement points for doing something in game as well). This reward stimulates our brain's dopamine. It doesn't physically do it like nicotine or !@#$%^- (heh, this was censored. Think the white powder stuff that you sniff) does, but it's still being done. We eventually become used to this "high" and some of us, unfortunately, start playing more and more to achieve this "high" again. The others, the lucky ones, simply stop playing after a while, citing boredom or what not. Even if there is a lot of content, they will simply just be bored and feeling burnt out, and stop playing. I think I've reached that point myself.
Source: Minor in psychology.
Edited by Jazeraca on 12/6/2012 9:48 AM PST
I have as well, iv barely played any new games for over a year now. Even games that i used to like for example assassins creed, i couldnt finish the last one because everything just has a feeling of been there done that.
Edit: The weird thing though, is that i recently went back and played the first fear (which was released in like 05) and it was amazing, so part of me just thinks its modern games that are the problem. But this may be off topic a bit.
Edited by Muddkips on 12/6/2012 10:34 AM PST
If you haven't seen any Extra Credits episodes, I'd recommend these three:
Most are 5-6 minutes of highly condensed, very excellent information, and I'd highly recommend their other videos as well. The second episode on game addition is quite a bit longer than their usual, though. They do an excellent job of describing the difference between being addicted, and experiencing compulsion.
James Portnow, who writes the episodes, is also definitely a source worth citing.
All videos can be found here:
Their homepage is here:
90 Orc Shaman
I could certainly see gaming, especially in an MMO, being an addiction, and I would probably lump myself into the population that is addicted.
I have tried on numerous occasions to quit WoW/SWTOR/Rift/etc, with little to no success. My friends, especially my girlfriend, give me grief every time I say I'm quitting because they know I will go back. To be honest, I really don't blame them because the same thing happens every time.
I try to further encourage myself to quit by deleting characters that I've poured weeks (well actually months) of my life into. I might make it anywhere from 2 weeks to a couple of months, but the same thing happens. I can't find anything that fills the void left behind by the MMO experience (advancing a character, pvp'ing, slaying bosses, etc etc). I try to play other games that don't necessarily have any long term play value, just a quick "for fun" kicks, but it's just not the same. Usually, it will get to the point where I'll wander my house aimlessly debating with myself whether or not I should re-sub, and I always do.
While I do feel somewhat addicted to playing MMO's, I feel like I've managed to make it a positive force in my life. I played WoW all throughout college, graduated with honors, got a great job, left that job for a greater job, and so on and so forth, all the while WoW and a few other MMO's served as a back drop. While I do gain some satisfaction from success in my actual work, I do enjoy that extra pick me up I get from advancing a character in an MMORPG.
As far as my social life is concerned, I don't see how WoW or any other MMO has adversely affected it. I do have a live-in girlfriend, (she does not play WoW or really any games for that matter), and she will occasionally give me grief about playing. I've skipped out on some of her family functions, which she claimed was so that I could play WoW, but really, I just can't stand them. I've always been able to make time for friends/family (some of whom I play with).
I would say the one thing about my addiction (if we want to call it that) that bothers me the most is the fact that I will continue to play despite not being terribly happy with game. I haven't been excited about WoW since mid Cata, but I continue to play despite that. I just feel like I need to keep going for the reasons I've described.
Even if you can find a game to fill that void you would just be replaceing one addiction (wow) with another (game).
My advice is to stop trying to find that 1 game to replace wow, and instead just play multiple games. Me for example, i have chivalry for stabbing things, counter strike for shooting things, skyrim for exploreing and crafting, terraria for building things, and day z for ganking and being a douchbag (rarely, im not a mean person). Instead of takeing one of those games seriously, i just play whatever i want for a few hours then stop.
Edited by Muddkips on 12/8/2012 11:23 AM PST
Again, there's a difference between an addiction and a trained compulsion. Many of us turn around and check the handle to make sure we locked the door when we leave our houses, but I'm not actually addicted testing doorknobs. When you fill hours of your day with games, it becomes a compulsive activity.
NOT an addiction.
It can have massively detrimental effects on peoples lives, I'm not denying that at all.
You're just using the word addiction out of context.
Edited by Verelyse on 12/9/2012 11:55 AM PST
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