The dangers of WoW addiction

I have my next column to write for Friday, and so I’ve been trying to think of things to write about. But sometimes, the best stories just fall into your lap. I was having lunch yesterday with my family when my sister told me that her roommate’s boyfriend had failed out of college. He was a huge World of Warcraft (WoW) addict and ended up playing it in preference to just about everything else, including doing homework and going to class. The roommate, who is also a huge WoW addict, is now really depressed without her boyfriend, and is going to fewer classes and playing WoW even more. So she might fail out as well.

These aren’t isolated phenomena. Too many students are failing out of college due to videogame addiction. In my Freshman year, back when I was still living in the dorms, I remember two people failed out because they were always playing games rather than doing work. Now, it’s hard to establish whether they failed out because they were just slackers and if it wasn’t videogames it’d be something else besides going to class and doing their work. But in my Sophomore year, I remember another kid failing out due to WoW, and he had previously been a good student. He just started playing the game obsessively to the exclusion of all else. We hardly ever even saw him after that. It had all the hallmarks of addiction.

I was actually tangled up in World of Warcraft during my Sophomore year as well. I played it through my entire second semester, often playing it to the exclusion of working on some necessary computer science projects. At least I never put it ahead of going out on weekend nights and having fun, but in the end, the educational part of college is more important than the partying aspect of it. I played it over most of the summer, when it really didn’t matter, as it wasn’t causing me to miss my job or anything. And then I just quit playing it before the summer ended, so that I could more fully focus on my studies. I haven’t looked back. How did I manage to do this? I’m not sure. The game just stopped being fun for me. The endgame, post-level-max parts of RPGs just really never appealed to me.

But many others aren’t so lucky. I read countless horror stories on the net about students failing out of school, men and women failing out of relationships, and workers failling out of their careers. Playing 8 or more hours a day for some of these people is routine. That’s one-third of their life! It’s scary. If you could put the total cost to society of WoW into real numbers, it’d easily be in the billions of dollars. And yet Blizzard keeps humming along like always, sucking up money from these unfortunate saps and frequently ruining their lives in “thanks”.

What can ultimately be done about it though? Don’t people ultimately have the freedom to do with their life as they wish? We’re not Communist China (who, incidentally, is trying to limit MMORPG-playing by its citizens to less than two hours per day). And what’s to say that if it wasn’t World of Warcraft it’d just be some other game, or some other distraction? I’ve heard stories from my dad about kids failing out of college for stupid reasons; one of the guys my dad lived with failed out because he spent all of his time making authentic chainmail, bending one ring at a time from raw materials. Is that really substantially different than World of Warcraft?

I just wish Blizzard would do something to help fix the situation. Ultimately, it is their game, and they have total control. They can’t be ignorant of all of the woe their game is causing, and although nobody can force them to fix things, I would say that they do have a moral obligation. The game was basically designed from the ground-up to be addictive, to get players on that leveling treadmill and then get them to pay month after month. It’s the pinnacle of addiction. WoW isn’t such a better game than all of the other MMORPGs, rather, it has finally perfected the addictive qualities. Can Blizzard really be so surprised that it ended up working, and that so many people now have to pay the consequences?

Update: See more reflections on my time spent playing World of Warcraft.

42 Responses to “The dangers of WoW addiction”

  1. Richard Says:

    Im an addict, but im not such an addict not to realise that, playing for almost 10 hours a day is just insane, and yet i wake up every day none the less and log on. Its reached such a stage when im permantly convinced that if im not online im letting people down cause im not there. Even when im not officially online im just browsing the forums or checking up on people through ventrillo. Now that ive left school and officially on study leave im presented with this huge amount of time i never had before. I should be studying for my exams, i should be finishing my assignments, basically anything else, instead its wow. I see it as an escape from reality more than anything else, its where id rather be in my mind, this isnt right and i know it. I tried to quit a few weeks ago and lasted 8 hours before i was so convinced that id be wrecking havoc in my absence before i went back. Thats why wow is addictive, its the community from it. You cant get addicted to a game like quake because when you log on you play alone, you destry virtual zombies and finish the game quietly by yourself. Wow however is different, when you log on first thing you do is say hi to your guild, exchange latest news and get aquainted for another evening. Sometimes you just stand around waiting for something to happen. You depend on each other and form bonds accordingly, depending on your group role you have a certain priority. Being a support class im not no1 but im very often still needed. If it wasnt for this wow would be just another game.

    From this you can see that me playing for nearly a year now, starting with a few hours every other day and resulting in 10 hours every day is a story of rapid and like you said treadmill progression, the more you put in the faster it gets. Once on you cant relax for a secand, i cant get out mainly because i tell myself that im not addicted. I am. Yet i keep going because every day i tell myself that when i finish my exams and all is well i can play to my hearts content. Basically im telling myself that when ive failed my exams i can then fail myself and loose myself in this game.

    This is not a game.
    For some its a life, i know people who play 16 hours a day every day. They live for it.

    Eventually wow will end, when it does i will finally realise what ive lost, if blizzard pulled the plug now they would loose a lot, but players would gain their lives back. All 6 million of them lost in this game.

    Call me what you will but you cant deny the fact that this is no ordinary game. It was made for addiction and im weak enough to become addicted to it.

    If you have any comments to this please post them to my email adress at “hammymham@hotmail.co.uk”

  2. Andy Says:

    Blizzard do reward you for not playing all the time by giving you “rested XP”, but they could probably do more, maybe if your character actually got tired and needed a minimum amountof rest time, that would make things better.

  3. Bill Says:

    To Andy,

    If this was the case us wow addicts would just play our alts more. Gotta say I would be pissed I couldn’t run my warrior through a raid cause he needed some freaking rest. Like wtf, leave me to my addiction. Gotta go. Need to grind out some more gold. L8r

  4. Baddox Says:

    Blizzard purposefully makes their game extremely slow, so as to require a lot of time from its users. Wow fans might disagree all day, but it’s a fact, the game takes a long time. They apparently rely on the monthly fees, so they have to keep people playing. To do so, they make it easy yet time-consuming (which is different than “difficult”), all under the guise that it’s a “deep” game with “a lot to it.” In reality, what types of games you like is up to you, and while I personally dislike MMO’s, you can like them if you want. However, what is NOT a matter of opinion is that, as you say, wow has made messes of people–any gamer has probably seen it. Even if the consequences are not so dire as failing out of college, wow can definitely negatively impact a group of gamers, because when some start playing wow and realize how effortless it is to spend time in the game, they’ll be less likely to put forth the effort to have, say, a LAN party.

  5. World of no-regret-craft - quitting WoW | Cyde Weys Musings Says:

    […] has been two years and two months since I quit playing World of Warcraft. I wasn’t really into it “that” badly as I “only” had 23 days of […]

  6. john Says:

    Hello to all WoW addicts,

    I used to be addicted to WoW. One year ago, back when i was a freshman and i was living in rez. My life was limited to classes and walls of my room, so me and my roommate decided to start playing wow. We played for a month and we invited other people in our dorm to play with us. Eventually we were 10 people who only speak, dream, and think of WoW. We were living in WoW not in Rez and university, and as the finals come, some of use failed and some like me passed with low marks. We were filling our loneliness with WOW, as an addict would use heroin to fill his/her life with numbness and emptiness to scape the pain which is caused for whatever reason…..

    In the second semester of the same year, I found new friends and i got a girlfriend. And as i socialized more, the attraction to wow became less and less effective. And fortunately someone in one of my luckiest days came to my room and asked if i would sell my account and character to him for 100$ and i instantly said yes, with no hesitation. And that’s where i stopped paying Blizzard!!!!!

    And now i am free of WoW addiction but still like WoW. And time to time i play WoW in privet servers which is so fun and free but only for an hour!! . So my advice to all of WoW addicts is to enjoy the reality. Go make some friends, go to parties, pick up some chicks and drink bear and enjoy the life, and they will eventually feel less attracted to WoW.

    Best regard to all WOW addicts,

  7. Vanessa Says:

    Hi there WoW addicts,

    I gave up WoW for good last night. I had been playing on and off for years but it had only been the past 2 months that my gaming had become a concern for me. I all of a sudden found myself wanting to play all the time and I got annoyed at other things that would require my attention. I have 3 full days to myself where I am meant to work and study but the past few months I have abandoned study for Kars, Grull’s and Mags runs and have thus gotten far behind. I also began skipping work periods in order to run raids etc and I could not wait to get my son into bed at night so I could play again. I would then stay up until the early hours of the morning and then be grumpy the next day and not be much fun for my baby boy who is only 2 years old.
    As I said I had been aware of this problem for a few weeks but continually pushed it into the back of my mind as I didnt want to do anything about it at the time……until last night.
    I got up and logged on for the last time. I went to the vendor and started to sell all my hard earned Epic items and everything else in my bag. I then ran my naked toon to the SW bank and emptied my bank slots and sold all that too. It was very hard typing that “DELETE” but as soon as I did I felt an immense weight come off my shoulders and I was glad that I had done it. I ended up sending all of my gold to an ex GF that I dont speak to anymore and then I wiped all of my toons one by one. All those hours that I played the game whilst I could have been doing other productive things, all those hours that I could have been going out with my partner, spending time with my son, improving my life through my study – wasted on a virtual world of escape.
    Not anymore.
    Glad I did it.
    Hope this helps.
    Remember, if you are spending too much time in a video game then what does that say about your real life? Do you even have one?
    GL
    V

  8. kara Says:

    i have been dating my boyfriend for almost 11 months now and i did know right from the start when we got together he was addicted to wow but because i lived far away whenever i came down to see him he would stop playing for however long i was down. He then went through a stage of about 2 months where he got bored of the game he had got to level 70 and was fed up of all the people on there who had alot of opinions for people who don’t leave the house ever, then only last week he got back into it again and even manipulated me into giving him my password to my paypal so he could buy me a “christmas present” which is actual fact was £25 worth of WOW gold – interesting present huh?

    Every arguement we have is over WOW i feel like i have to compete with it to get his attention and we live together so obviously to make a relationship work we have to spend time together but he can’t understand that, he doesn’t play to extreme levels like 10-13 hours aday because thankfully he has a full time job so at least he gets out of the house at some point. But when he does have the weekend off he will play 2-3 hours and i just feel he is literally choosing a computer over me am i not good enough to keep him occupied? i understand why he plays because its a escape and where he lives there is nothing to do but i can’t be expected to run our relationship by myself. I love him sooo much so don’t want to have to do what every other girlfriend has done and leave her boyfriend hoping that her leaving will result in him waking up because i know it won’t have any effect and i have read so many horror stories on here of boyfriends being violent and defensive and one girl hacked into her boyfriends account and sold it for free without him knowing as revenge, i don’t want to do that i just want a compromise is that not far to ask for?

    I don’t think i am being unreasonable and would never ask him to choose between me and the computer ultimately because i am scared of the answer in all honesty but because its his hobbie its like him asking me to quit speaking to my friends, i have also tried to participate more you know take a active interest in WOW ask questions and stuff but nothing seems to work what do i have to do for my boyfriend to want to spend some time with me? dress up as one of the characters or something?

    Last night we had the last arguement i refuse to have over WOW and he suggested that i give it a shot and play WOW with him because he believes this will strengthen our relationship and give us more to talk about, i have tried to explain i don’t want to get addicted to it and ruin my own life but he takes it as a offense because to him this is his remedy to our problem and we’ll have the perfect relationship.

    Because i love him so much i am willing for him to teach me about WOW and set me up a account and we agreed i’ll get to level 15 and then we’ll see if i like it or not and if not he seems to think there is no compromise either WOW or me, he told me he gets angry because some days he thinks yes i could give up WOW for kara but other days he doesn’t and he doesn’t want to quit either.

    I guess i have no choice but to give it a shot on WOW and see how it goes but if it doesn’t work out i just want a compromise not him punishing himself and giving it up forever just him to consider my feelings more and want to do things with me, make me feel like he needs/wants/likes being with me and spending time with me apart from in the bedroom.

    I don’t think i am being unfair at all or asking anything that isn’t possible compared to the other crazed, resentful girlfriends out there selling their boyfriend’s accounts and loving them and leaving them i am a less aggressive version. I just want to feel like he wants us to work because i have given up so much for him and feel like he gets his but i don’t get mine i want us to work so badly i will try just about anything.

  9. knacker Says:

    That is so hilarious.

    I wonder if that’s all we’ll be in the future; video game tech is only going to get more refined as time goes by. If the world they have doesn’t appeal to you now, just wait and they’ll find something that does, be it urban, sci-fi, violent fantasies were all you do is kill stuff….

    And the world will become fragmented, between hundreds of virtual worlds because people all decided they can’t tolerate each other.

  10. Cyde Weys Says:

    Knacker, there are many words to describe this situation (sad, pathetic, depressing, infuriating, etc.), but I wouldn’t describe it as hilarious.

    I talked with a teenager in an online game once who said his mom was unemployed and spent at least twelve hours a day playing World of Warcraft. She simply stopped being a mother, not taking care of the house, not cooking any meals, barely even speaking to her children, not caring if they were doing well in school, etc. The pain this kid was experiencing came across the Internet as plain as if I was talking to him in this very room. It’s not hysterical at all — it’s the tearing apart of families.

  11. Jeremy Says:

    I have played and quit for the last 2 years, but what I am most ashamed of is bringing my younger brothers to the game. They both are addicts, one of which subsequently quit his railroad job and gained a bunch of weight because he never leaves the house anymore (has his groceries delivered to him!).

    I am the oldest brother, and though it was difficult for me- I have quit. They are both fairly sensitive guys, and they let the shades down anytime I mention quitting or addiction. Of course- they will hold a conversation with me about raiding or epic drops or dps or yada yada any day of the week.

    I hang my head in shame for this…

    Anyone who thinks that WoW addiction is not a REAL addiction, read this:

    Taken from the DSM-IV (Diagnostic criteria guide published by the American Psychiatric Association)(book used to reference criteria used to diagnose psychiatric disease):

    SUBSTANCE DEPENDENCE

    A maladaptive pattern of substance use, leading to clinically significant impairment or distress as manifested by three or more of the following, occurring at any time in the same 12 month period:

    -tolerance
    -withdrawal

    -THE SUBSTANCE IS OFTEN TAKEN IN LARGER AMOUNTS OR OVER A LONGER PERIOD THAN WAS INTENDED

    -THERE IS PERSISTENT DESIRE OR UNSUCCESSFUL EFFORTS TO CUT DOWN OR CONTROL THE SUBSTANCE USE

    -A great deal of time is spent in activities necessary to obtain the substance, USE THE SUBSTANCE, or recover from its effects

    -Important SOCIAL, OCCUPATIONAL, OR RECREATIONAL activities are given up or reduced because of the substance use

    -The substance use is continued despite knowledge of having a persistent or recurrent physical or psychological problem that is likely to have been caused or exacerbated by the substance (In the case of WoW, depression, insomnia, ect.)

    … scary

  12. knacker Says:

    Well you’re entitled to your emotions, but that touchy feely gunk doesn’t get to me. I’m not going to say that it isn’t addictive or that these people aren’t REALLY ruining their lives, but damn people… It’s badly animated and poorly conceived characters jumping around throwing fireballs.

    I would think it would take more pathos and immersion to draw people into a game like this, so they’d rather live in that world than this one… But I guess all it takes is (poorly) emulating a world where we can easily carry out our baser tribal instincts.

    It’s Devolution!

  13. Pilsner Says:

    WoW… I am a WoW player and have been playing for nearly 4 years now, I play roughly 2-4 hours a night after I have sat down at the dinner table and spent the evening eating dinner with my wife and son. After dinner me and my companion spend 2-3 hours watching T.V. together and talking about the day untill she falls asleep. I must admit that I think and talk about WoW with felow co-workers who also play almost as soon as we arrive at work. Yet it doesnt alter my performance (mechanic in the military) in any way or my duties as a provider for my family. All this that I have written is blah blah blah to most reading it but my reasoning for posting this responce is to ask…. Am I concidered a WoW addict?. My wife says I am great father and a great husband yet she calls me a Addict also, is this true?

    -For the Horde!

  14. Tyler Says:

    well, im 15, and im not totaly sure if im a WoW Addict, i play about 3-5hrs a day after school, sometimes in the morning b4 school,6:00-7:40, i have a level 71 warrior, a 70 Shaman, and a 70 paladin, and ive been playing for about 2years now. My school work just dosent seem as important to me when im playing WoW, its like im in a whole new world. A better world were you can be something better then what you are in the real world. so, am i an addict?

  15. Paul Says:

    Tyler if you play 3-5 hours a day that is quite extreme. I played 2hrs a day and i got banned, try not playing for a week and you won’t like it as much. 2hrs a day is fine and is a hobby.

  16. knacker Says:

    Try getting a job.

  17. ForTheHorde Says:

    Interesting thread. Many individuls have addictive personalities. These people, in most cases, will always find something as an excuse to escape from reality.

    Crazy!

  18. larry j. fagface Says:

    I drink, perform abortions, shoot smack and beat children all while playing WoW. “Cyde’s Musings” are bullshit. get a life. you probably rolled alliance you dumb fuck. ROFL>

  19. Numarkoth Says:

    It’s kind of funny how many times I’ve left and come back to WoW.

    I’ve played the early stages of WoW Alpha (I’m a lucky Californian kid), and from there, I’ve raided everything pre-BC up to Naxxramas, got three world firsts, as well as two characters to Rank 14.

    When the PvP system changed, I quit. Transferred the characters to other accounts, and individually sold them all : 2700$ profit. Ten level 60 characters, just before BC comes out. There was a rush of people willing to get their hands on fresh 60s to come right in the expansion.

    Two months later : I come back, start from scratch, and I level a Holy Priest to 70. I play, get a guild together, start raiding, guild disbands, I’m not in the mood of farming all day long : sell account 300$.

    Another month later : I buy three accounts at once, I upgrade them all and play them all at the same time. In less than 30 days I have three level 70 characters, on different accounts. I sell two of them after sending all the gold they had to the third account : 700$ + an account with a Hunter that’s left with roughly 15,000 gold from all the combined grinding.

    Then I play the Hunter a few months, never get in a raiding guild. I hit 2250 Arena Rating in Season 2 as a Survival Hunter with a Restoration Shaman partner. Season 2 ends, from there I stop PvPing and I just straight farm reputations. Get Exalted with most factions, halfway to gold-cap : 100,000 gold. I sell the gold to particulars for 12.25$/1000, and the account on top of it. Total gains : Roughly 1700$.

    Another month later I get another account, upgrade it, level up yet another Priest to 70, and get bored. I end up giving the account away to a random dude after gathering 20 people and getting them all to /roll in a raid. He rolled a 20. Way to go !

    Some people take a long time to figure out the inner workings of WoW, but I guess I was just motivated enough (heroic fantasy is more than a passion for me). I’ve always been in the top players on servers I played on, in terms of skill, when I worked it out. I get the hang of things quickly, and I’m not sure whether it’s a curse or a blessing, but generally, I’m gifted when it comes to MMORPG RTSs.

    I’ve never really suffered from WoW, even with a full-time job. I’m not living with anyone yet, but I’ve been steady with the same girl for three years and a half now, and I’m only 19 years old. We never argue, we never fight, she never played WoW. I knew when to let down, and she knew when I really wanted to play.

    It’s all a matter of compromise and concessions; get your priorities straight, and when you’re over with them, you can play all you want. Least that’s how I see it.

    Yet, I’m still addicted to WoW, in that I can’t spend a single day without wishing I was still kicking ass in front of a computer instead of learning how to brew a cocktail up in that restauration institute. I’m just an everyday normal guy; fairly in shape, yet never enough, I have a job, I pay a rent, I go to school, I buy food and whatnots. And I go out and make a girlfriend happy.

    Want my opinion ?

    The problem is not WoW alone: it’s the idiots that play it.
    If you really want people on your server or your group of friends to recognize your “talent”, just maximize your time/accomplishment ratio. You need gold ? Farm and use an auction house alt. Don’t just stand around in a city; oh wait, you want to ? Alright, well stand around in a city on your auction house alt and make deals as you speak with your friends.

    Nothing’s stressing in that.
    Just play your game, but play it well, and be efficient.

    Samething with your life : if you wanna live, live well, and be efficient.

    Efficiency’s the only way to live.
    If you want to rest, make sure your priorities are taken care of, and then only you can relax.

    My two copper.

  20. grdstudnt Says:

    I’m a 24 year old grad student. My much younger brother just had a really bad first semester in college with three C’s in a top engineering program, and he was one of the sharpest kids in his high school. At first I thought that his bad grades were a mix of contracting mono, joining a fraternity, and other freshman stupidness that kids do. However over Christmas break I watched him playing WoW for hours and hours on end and I think the game is the real reason. When mom and dad would call him up for dinner if he was in the middle of raiding or whatever he would get really mad and be in a bad mood all through the meal. Then he would slink off downstairs to play through the rest of the night. Trying to figure out what the big deal was, he let me start a character on his spare account. The whole experience was so mesmerizing that I didn’t even feel 10-12 hours slip by as I was constantly working toward that next level. Back at school I feel myself wanting to play the stupid game instead of do the things I normally enjoy. I’m not going to breakdown and buy it myself, but I can definitely understand how quickly it becomes addicting. I’m thinking I should do my brother a favor and delete his account.

  21. knacker Says:

    haha wow anonymous

  22. recoveringwowaddict Says:

    I find some of these stories sad. I am glad that I came to realise what this game was doing to me before it destroyed my wonderful marriage, but damn it was close. I am still working on repairing the damage. As others have mentioned, its not only the time you spend in the game, its how much you resent people for scheduling something on an evening you would usually be playing, or how even when you are with your family your mind is just focused on Wow.

    Now as to those people who claim that you must have an addictive personality. I dispute that. I experimented with soft drugs as much as most teenagers and never got hooked. I drank and binge drank as much as most students and never developed an alcahol dependency. I got really into poker during the no-limit craze, yet did not have a problem. I simply stopped when it stopped being fun. I dont have an addictive personality, yet I was addicted to Wow.

    Then their are those people who say that it is impossible for Wow to be addictive. Well, call it what you like, an addiction or a compulsion, I smoked for 13 years, I was hooked, and it is amazing the similarities between them. I would rush to the keyboard, first thing after waking to check my auctions. I would grab my smokes as the first thing I did when I smoked. While I could not play wow, the only thing I thought of was related to wow. When I was at home, regardless of what was going on, I just wanted to play, I had an urge to play, I would get irritated if I was expected to do something else instead of logging on. I would do anything I could to get time to play, including neglecting important aspects of RL. My 13 years of smoking, and multiple attempts at stopping before I finally kicked it taught me what an addiction is. Sorry to those who would prefer to deny it, but I was addicted to a computer game. Even the urge to log on and play again is not as strong, but not that dissimilar to a tabacco craving.

    2 months wow free and counting.

  23. shane Says:

    WOW is a well designed and crafted virtual world where people can forget about their job and other worries and just lose themselves into a fantasy world and even talk to others and socialize. It is purely entertainment and should be treated as such. If WOW is taking control of you and it is getting in the way of personal relationships, work or school..then the problem is not WOW or Blizzard entertainment. All they are doing is providing a means for entertainment, not a drug or something evil. Their is brilliance behind the creation of this game and Blizzard deserve credit for this. The blame for addictions start with the gamers, for not having will power and balance in their lives. I play WOW and i know it can be addicting but here is some advice for gamers who find themselves getting sucked into this and feel they have lost a grip on themselves. Take a break, reduce the hours you are playing it, play maybe 1 or 2 hours a day or every other day. If you do this you will find yourself enjoying it even more and it will not get in the way of your personal life and daily duties/responsibilities. Playing it for 10 hours straight, every day will not be fun in long run. You will get burnt out and tired of it. It’s just entertainment, just as a sports event, movie, concert…. not your life!

  24. Lenny Says:

    Yes, some people get lost in MMOs.

    In 2002 stepped down from leading a hardcore Everquest raiding guild because it felt a little too much like being a bartender on an Indian reservation.

  25. recoveringwowaddict Says:

    @Shane. For a person addicted to the game it IS Wow as much as it is alcohol for the alcoholic or drugs for the drug addict. People who say that wow addiction is simply a symptom of a larger issue are blowing hot air. I went for 41 years without having to find an outlet for any kind of issue before wow, and I seem to be doing ok after wow. The fact is that people who are addicted dont want to face the fact, and people who have not experienced it first hand have a hard time understanding it.

    Wow is not just a fantasy world where you drop in and socialise. It is an alternate reality carefully constructed to allways offer the allure of increased rewards for more time spent. It has a multitude of
    tasks that are not difficult, but take up huge amounts of time. It has a drop system aimed at having you repeat content over and over again. This is not by chance, Blizzard employ people with very specific skills in everything from information sciences to cognitive psychology to create this carefully balanced world.

    Don’t mistake my comments for any kind of excuse, I got myself someplace, I got myself out of it but absolving the game from any kind of role in all of these stories is like absolving big tabacco from any kind of role in cigarette addiction.

  26. PersonalResponsibilityisNeeded Says:

    I love it when people start talking about addiction, and how games are to blame for the addiction. Being an avid WoW player for two years, I also play other games as well. Not everybody who plays WoW is addicted to the game, so saying the game has been created to addict is a stupid assumption. Addiction is a byproduct of any type of behaviour Some people are more prone to addiction then others, but it is the addicts fault for allowing themselves to be addicted. Addiction is a byproduct of a person liking something. If a person likes ice cream, they can become addicted to it. If someone likes WoW they can become addicted to it. It is everyone’s personal responsibility to maintain their own personal habits, whether addiction is involved or not. Blaming game companies for people’s addictions and irresponsibility is comprised of baseless evidence and wild assumptions. But, I guess it is easier to blame everything on one or two companies, then to blame yourself or natural human behavior. Stop using cop outs and take some responsibility for yourself!!!!

  27. Linkark Says:

    I started to play wow since last year but in private servers but at the end of april I bought the game for play on Blizzard servers and what can I say, I got addicted to the game. At the beginning of the year (we start school at march) my grades were ok but when I started playing my grades started to get lower, almost I failed some subjects like biology of phisics because I didnt cared about them, I only cared about raiding, pvp and getting money for get the best fomulas and epic training. When Wotlk got out I couldnt buy the game because where I live the games take alot of tiem for come and in my anger I broke my cell phone, incredible how my addiction was, at least I didnt had to pay for the game because a friend (that I have never met face to face) told me by vent an activation code. In december after christmas I was training an alt for heal and tank raids but suddenly I started to think that the game was a waste of time and how I can have wasted like 8 months of my life playing such an useless game that wont help me in the future and could have ruined it. Next day the first thing I did was enter my account, clicked cancel suscription and then unistalled the game plus its expansion from my computer and after that I feel great and Im planning to get better grades this year. The only thing I said to myself is that never ever again I cant play any mmorpg, all those game are addictive.

  28. SilentBlade Says:

    I use to be a wow addict myself when it first came out. I wasn’t going to get the game at first but my friend got me hooked into the game and I been playing it nonstop. Eventually he left wow for good and closed his account. I still play it. But then I realized that its getting real boring and I stopped playing one day. Very so seldomly I play wow but I limit myself to the game and play less than I normally would play a lot. WoW doesn’t excite me like it use to. I guess its all about willpower just like quit smoking. Now that I limit my playing time on WoW I spend more time going out and being less at home playing WoW.

  29. Tim Says:

    You guys should stop playing World of Warcraft (WoW) because it is really addicting! i have been playing this game for like a year now, but i stoped because my grades in school was going down… i really didn’t want that…because i want to have good life when i finish college… i am sure so as you. You don’t wanna play WoW and be pure whole life and not have fun…. SO I AMN TELLING YOU, STOP PLAYING THIS STUPID GAME… it is really fun game but you have to end some fun stufff sometimes and think about your future!

  30. Zanzuke Says:

    I used to be addicted to Counter-Strike (yes addicted >_<)
    Playing it day in, day out for about 9 months, then eventually got bored and quit.

    It was during a time when I was too young to go out and party, but once I turned 16 I suddently had a lot of stuff to do, started to work at a supermarket, made a lot of new friends etc.

    You just have to find something to break the habbit, seriously, WoW can be played in moderation, it really can be, I’m playing about 3-4 hours a day depending on my daily schedule.
    Still having good gear through raiding/instances, I don’t bother doing PvP since it’s just pure nonsense and it’s too addictive, so I just stay away from it like it’s some deadly poison :]

    Some suggestions to people that find themselves being a bit too “addicted” to WoW:

    + Are you in a guild that forces you to raid or PvP on specific times? LEAVE and find a ‘fun guild’, they might not be competitive, but the mood is a lot less tense and you don’t have the urge to log on every day just because some fat kid or 40 year old no-lifer tells you to.
    + Stay away from PvP, seriously, I know how addictive it is that’s why I stay away from it.
    + Achievements are worthless IRL, you can’t go look for a job saying you have done all the WoTLK end-game on heroic..
    + Are you filling up lone or depressing feelings with WoW? Find the cause of the feelings and work on them, talk to family, friends, parents, w/e as long as you get it of your chest. (Talking to your guild buddy’s on Ventrilo or Teamspeak ain’t going to cut it ..)
    + Calculate the ammount of money you’re wasting on WoW. (Half of your playing time is based on walking anyway, so cut the total of your /played times through half and then calculate the amount of money wasted on doing .. NOTHING.
    + Set clear goals in life, getting X level in Y /playd time isn’t a goal.
    + Call up some friends, and go to the pub, get wasted, have a good time.

    Isn’t that hard now is it?
    I admit that sometimes I’d rather WoW then studying or doing homework or w/e, but life isn’t about WoW, you have to set proper goals because remember .. in 20 years WoW will be long gone and you’ll hate yourself for wasting so much time on a game, if you can game in moderation then be proud of yourself, it seems hard but it’s possible!

    Zanzuke

  31. Xyler Says:

    After watching the Southpark Episode ‘Make Love, Not Warcraft,’ I already knew of the impending addictions this would present, so I proceeded cautiously. But I’ll be honest, I was seeking a good RPG. The last great RPG I played was Final Fantasy VII. I played that through many times, enjoying the numerous characters and abilities they possessed, customization of each character, and fairly lengthy storyline. At that point, there was nothing worse than pouring alot of time, whether all at once or over time, and just having it end abruptly. I mean, you finally get the uber abilities, uber weapons, and uber high level, then the game is over?

    So when WoW came into my life, it was like the perfect marriage of all I had ever wanted from a game: Ultimate customization, sprawling territories, excitement, lore, great graphics compared to prior games, freedom, and what seemed to be an innumerable amount of quests. I was overwhelmed and frightened. I wanted to be 60 (at that point) and do hard game content. Unfortunately, Burning Crusade came out, so I had a ways to go.

    I leveled fast, though, brought my Warlock to 70 and was in the preeminent guild on my small, growing server. It was at that point where LIFE v. LEVEL CAP progress began its toll. Before that, its all on your own time. You can dungeon with whoever you want, whenever you want. You can level alts. You can farm gold or reroll factions at a whim. But once you get your first taste of WoW level-cap gaming, you’re addicted.

    At level cap, you spend countless hours farming for the smallest upgrade, grinding faction reputation for gear necessary to nuke the upcoming encounters, grinding gold for mounts, grinding honor to be powerful in PVP, etc. When you’re raiding, especially new content patches, the thirst to raid that to an extreme and obscene amount is very strong. Even now Patch 3.1 just came out (many years later), and people have just discarded their raid schedules and are nuking 10 and 25 man content nearly everyday. That leads me to my stance on the “WoW Addiction.”

    It isn’t about peoples’ lives; playing WoW casually is very possible while you level, but the story basically ends abruptly at level cap for that the latest content because you can’t really get more time/value from it. For instance, while leveling, there’s plenty of quests, mounts, gear, and dungeons to do. The world seems huge and sprawling, almost overwhelming. You are also walking or running around alot, not on flying mounts.

    At 80, there’s very few things to do. The only thing making back-content viable has been achievements, which just keep you in-game more than ever, especially the World Events one, which is time-based and really only possible during each event of the year. If you miss it, you have to wait a WHOLE year to finish it properly. So at 80, you’re doing faction dailies (grinding), pvp (grinding), raids (grinding), and doing heroics until you are bored or have all the Heroic achievements done. Most guilds do 25 man raids about 2-3 days a week, and the off days its almost an unspoken truth that you do 10 man raids, since they are minor upgrades worthwhile in 25 man raids. Get gear off the hard modes or Yogg-Saron and you will have an upgrade from 25 man naxx, just obtained from a 10 man Ulduar raid.

    Raiding isn’t something you do for just an hour either. Rare is it that good players who can raid and have their toons pimped out would just “settle” for 1 hour of raiding/week or would have the ability to clear 10 or 25 man content so casually. So the better players with toons properly geared for raiding inevitably flow toward playing ALOT…16-24 hours a week, easily.

    My in-game guildmates range from guys who are out of work, kids who rush home to play after school until bed, and people who play from work. Not one of them has a successful relationship or can speak of successful REAL LIFE accomplishments. Many are great people, which is sad they waste this talent on a game, rather than LIFE, where you do benefit from such things and so do others. I really do love feeling like I play through a story and being able to affect that story, but when you UNPLUG your comp after a long night of raiding or grinding something out, when the lights are off, the 3-4 hours you spent there did nothing for YOUR REAL life, so Lord help you if you socialize at all, because you won’t have much to say or contribute. Things you can do with WoW and Raid Time:

    – Read.
    – Work.
    – Enjoy the outdoors.
    – Visit friends or family.
    – Improve your career prospects.
    – Do Laundry.
    – Workout.
    – Play a sport.
    – Play an instrument.
    – Travel.

    Finally, I had a friend who traveled the world and played WOW. When I met him he was playing from New Zealand. Later on, he returned to Brazil. From Brazil, he went to Europe where he has been for about 3 months. Originally he played WOW hardcore, on almost everyday since he worked from home and would save a bunch of $ to travel to that location then just enjoy it. But later on, he stopped logging on so we kept in touch through GMAIL. Oddly enough, while I had WOW, he had traveled to many new countries and had met many new people. He now knows 4 languages and is working on his degrees.

    We are capable of so much. Just think of where your life will be in 1 year, 2 years, or 4 years when WOW is gone and what you could have done with that WOW time? I think people are so average or down about their lives that they can’t see how great they can make their life, so they figure “WOW is better than TV and most people have dumb hobbies, WOW is a hobby for me,” so they just brush off this addiction. However, there’s no hobby on the planet that consumes that much time. Moreover, you can start and stop your hobbies as you want. WoW players rarely go AFK long enough to focus on other people. Most WOW people can’t socialize outside of WOW very well, since they aren’t in touch with the world.

  32. WoWKid Says:

    I have had a terrible time quitting WoW. I wanted to quit, just to be able to move on to other things.

    It wasn’t until I found http://www.wowdetox.com that I actually started getting some hope!

    I am getting ready to quit for good, and I owe it to this site. It might help someone else too.

    Good luck!

  33. Cyphren Says:

    While one part of me is reluctant to call myself addicted, the other is happy (and possibly pleased) to.

    I started playing WoW just over 4 years ago I took two toons to 60 and raided from MC to Naxx (those in the know will understand this put me to about the top 5% of players for game progression). During this time I completed my first year of university, and received my first overseas scholarship. After I returned to Aust I played WOW for another 6 months before my second overseas scholarship. I quit WoW now (first quit) and was offline for about 3months. Then I bought a computer and got back into it. It was great, all the friends I had back in Aust were right there (I play with many RL mates). So I played until I came back to Aust a year later.

    I continued to play for most of my university time. The expansion came out and I joined a BC raiding guild. Once again, my dedication and ability (is it bragging to say this? with the time spent one would hope to be damn good) took me to the top tier of progression (from Karazhan to Sunwell). I graduated from university with good marks and got myself a full time job managing one of the bigger bars of my hometown (not as great as it sounds, but looks nice on the resume).

    Wrath of the Lich King came out next and I Powered my way to the max level and got right back into raiding, clearing everything the game had to offer within the first few weeks. Then disaster struck… my flatmate (and the Main Tank) had his computer die on him and was unable to afford to replace it. He stopped due to that. I quit by association.

    I left the game for a good 6 months (second quit)

    Then I returned for 1 month… raced back to the top of progression…. and quit again (third quit)

    I got another job working full time overseas, and I took that. Im now living overseas and I started playing WoW again two weeks ago. In that time I returned to just about the edge of progression (ToC10/25 done, but no hardmodes for those in the know).

    During my WoW time I have worked, travelled overseas, graduated and studied two languages… My combined /played (total time in game) is over 365 days.

    Scary considering I’ve played for 4 years.

    Its an addiction…. but is it interfering with my life?

  34. Andy Says:

    I was addicted. I skipped some courses because Wow. Then I got a real job. Which didnt make a big diffrence to addiction. Basically I would do like 10 hour work days, then do 4-6 hours of wow and sleep about 4-6 hours after travelling time. In reality I was escaping my earlier problems in life and when I got full time job I kept doing it like a duracell bunny.

    This way I went on about 15 months, as full time programme(I am still btw).

    What caused me to end was that I finally started to do endgame. I found it dull, time consuming and realized I really didn’t enjoy game. I also was able to get real holiday for a long time, which effectively made my daily activities diffrent.
    It made me to ponder my life style. Also I was very tired to be tired all a time at work, which pissed me off. I put my wow addiction to bad self discpline, having too much time in my hands and fact that its easier to access Wow than many other hobbies(and I dont have lot of hobbies). And a need to escape real life.

    But I also have friend thats close to my age(over 30), has not much of work experience has played wow since the game out. He never goes to work, just takes his social security check to pay rent and wow, and playes wow all a time. Where I am, lot of young people who have problem getting a job or going to school, do Wow. I’d say Blizzard isn’t to be blame to my problems or other people, but playing Wow doesnt help but helps people escape the problems they have.

    The game is made in simple reward/effort system which rewards for activities. Because its monthly fee game, its made way that people have to play certain minium time to get at maxium level and achieve all things there is. And that time is calculated in months. The catch is that while you can’t make less the time you need to play to get things you need, you can always add the time you spend in a day to get them. That creates the cycle of addiction as players always calculate it that way and when they are in that logic, they always spend more time to play to get faster forwards. That means longer hours and soon your whole world is wow. And while you are running like mad forward, minutes becomes hours, hours days, and days weeks and weeks months. That way it becomes way of like, replacing everything else.

    At some point lot players just get tired on Wow. They dont want to do the long hours, sometimes endless grinding in pvp or raids. But for some people it may become the social network they work best and know best. I just got bored and my life stabilized. My hard work also ment I wanted to do something else. I grew up. But then again, I was in full time job, that forced to think my priorities. Not everyone has that, or something as important to reconsider priorities.

    Wow is a problem to some people, and people shouldn’t pretend it isn’t. Responsbility is inviduals, but Wow can be part of the problem.

  35. øyvind Says:

    if u cant stop playing wow ure fuckin weak

  36. wayne Says:

    i think the only way to get him off it is set him up with a girl i was absesed with this game but one day me and my family went on holiday and one of my mates was there he took me to a party and i got drunk any way this girl thought it would be a good idea to take the kid who was fat lonly coverd with akny up stairs the next morning she woke up next to a fat ugly dude she ran away and it broke my hart but i got over it lost wate in fact now i have abs almost and im verry good looking now if i say so my self and i neve touched wow agen

  37. tom Says:

    how intimate can two players get while role playing in World of Warcraft? Can two people search out each other in this game to play side by side if they know the others character??

  38. Le très petit souris Says:

    Please. Don’t even start. One can tell that hopeless romantics get addicted very easily. I recommend that you devote your time to something that will distract you from those urges.

  39. Wow Widow Says:

    My boyfriend misses important family occaisions because he has “to do fishing”every Saturday at 1pm … EVERY saturday

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  41. Daniel Says:

    So many people who play this game are hopelessly addicted, yet they can’t see it. If you bring it up then they get incredibly defensive and get angry at you.

    I used to play a lot. I was never as bad as some but I was pretty bad.

    http://www.quit-wow.com/ is a great site for people trying to quit. Also this article: http://www.quit-wow.com/articles.php?id=1

  42. Noel Says:

    I have had friends who play W.o.W and are fine letting go of it and doing other things. Then again, I also had friends that I don’t see anymore due to there constant gaming. I don’t think mmo’s are bad because I have played some and I liked it but when it becomes more important than your family or education, it has to stop! I consider W.o.W a friend stealer because I can’t chill with certain people now unless I play the game too. I won’t by the way because I think it is crazy to pay for a game not once or twice but in monthly subcriptions. As with other addictions, when I brought up that I thought they had a problem they became angry and shut me out. I just think there should be incenitive to give your characters rest periods. In this game I used to play, if you played more than 5 hours you got this screen that popped up and said something to the effect of ‘you have been playing too long, go the hell outside!’ Maybe that kind of feature would help.