Are MMORPGs Addictive?

MMORPG ScreenshotCognitive Daily shows the results from a limited study of how several computer games affect college students. Are MMORPGs the new reefer? Perhaps.

I do not play WOW or Age of Conan or any of the other MMORPGs. I’ve refused because I’ve seen since the inception of Ultima and EverQuest just how much valuable time can be sucked down by the need to play the game. Not that I’m throwing stones, here. I’ve been a Tetris freak in my time and I’ve been known to stay up ’til the wee hours for just one more turn on Civilization. I know my limitations and I’m pretty sure that WOW would be the end of my free time.

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3 Responses to Are MMORPGs Addictive?

  1. Annie says:

    I know my limitations and I’m pretty sure that WOW would be the end of my free time.

    Yep, I don’t believe Jenn would much enjoy being a WOW widow. There are times I’m not so thrilled about being one (hmmm, like now).

  2. zerj says:

    I thought I would get sucked in, and I was for all of 2 weeks, but WoW just didn’t do it for me. Way too much grinding. I read a video article here I think

    http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/zero-punctuation?page=1

    That really drove home just how mind numbing this style of game was. Work for 2 hours killing field mice using a wooden spoon so that you can earn a board with a nail that you use for the next two hour to kill rats. The names of the weapons/creatures change but the game is completely identical.

  3. Tim says:

    Ok…I feel I need to respond on this one. If for no other reason that I play a whole lot of MMOs and have been involved in the industry. First my 2 cents about the games already mentioned. Age of Conan is…well its new and it does have at least some innovation…but its the buggiest release I’ve seen since…well since the last funcom game. WoW…is the 1000 lb. gorilla of the industry. But on a personal note I have no idea why. I hate grinding…both for levels and equipment.
    There are numerous other games out there in the MMO market (I don’t want to say its flooded…but there are a lot of MMOs right now). A lot of them rely on the same sort of grinding as WoW (time sinks with little rewards leading to the next time sink…cause if you reach the end of the game, you might quite). I personally like the ones that have good storylines or unique gameplay. My personal favorites and suggestions to try include City of Heroes (still going to have a level grind, but no real equipment to grind for and if your friends are a different level than you just sign on as their side kick and you can play together just fine despite the level difference), Dungeons and Dragons online (I find combat in this more active and intense that in any other game…its the main reason I can’t go back to games with WoW style combat…which is sadly the standard right now), and Pirates of the Burning Sea (at least for their ship to ship combat…their “swashbuckling” combat was an afterthought and suffers for it. If you stay away from the economic portion of the game (which is cool in its own right, but a little scary too) this one has a minimum of what feels like grinding).
    I also know a more than a few couples at this point that play these games together…no need for anyone to be a “WoW widow” if they both enjoy it. Hehe…that said I’d be hard pressed to prove that I’m not an MMO addict (cause I am)…or that they aren’t addictive for many people. If you fear for your free time vanishing I’d be remiss as a friend if I didn’t warn you that they can eat up a lot of time fast if your not careful (I do the just one more turn too thing in civ…a good MMO is equally as addictive as a good multiplayer game of civ). THAT said…I do love gaming with my friends far away and I do love MMOs…so I feel I should also take on my best zombie like stare and start muttering the words “join us” repeatedly. ;)

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