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back to article World of Warcraft: 'The crack cocaine of the computer world'

Is World of Warcraft as addictive as crack cocaine? Some say yes. Others are too busy playing World of Warcraft to answer. The former opinion is given by a Swedish youth organization that works with addictions. The org says it's releasing a new report labeling the online swords n' sorcery excursion as "the most dangerous game …

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@ Mycho

Angband - now that is hard core.

Whilst I was at warwick Uni I remember 5 to 6 hour playing sessions going through the latest compile made by some guy doing compsci (Geoff?). I was always the lightweight as I normally went to bed at some point.

However on one occassion I did wake up at 6am to find myself sitting at a computer with my fingers still stuck on the control keys and some security guy looming over me asking me kindly to move along.

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Urrghhh Wow

Meh my kids will grow up playing proper games like shooting people and dismembering things

not that wimpy magic stuff lile WOW

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Coat

Wanna break their addiction?

If parents don't think they can stop their child playing WarCrack, I would suggest the two parents set up a rota and level a character of their choice on the same server but on the opposing faction then gank their child whenever he goes online. THat'll learn the little bastard...though can I have his T3 epic gear before he gives up please?

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Alert

Another Moral Panic

Oh dear, yet another moral panic fuelling our hysterical ban-o-mania. Look, it's not the game that has made the 15-year-old ill, his was ill already, which is why he played WoW until he collapsed. What was wrong with this lad's life? An absence of parental love, perhaps?

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Anonymous Coward

RE: "Addiction" a selective term?

No doubt there are all sorts of people who will argue and wax lyrical (or not) regarding the usefulness of novels, both fact and fiction, as compared with the act of mashing buttons on a controller/mouse & keyboard, but one definite advantage is the ability to use language correctly. I’m seeing far too few graduates these days who cannot construct a sentence properly, or learn how paragraphs work or should be used, and heaven forbid that they should ever have to write a letter! You comment on Dickens’ efforts, of whom I am no fan of, but reading his works might allow a person to understand how to write the project plan in legible English at least… I am working with several foreign consultants and even though their English is far better than my knowledge of their language, unfortunately for them this office is UK based and English speaking, and their lack of understanding of the nuances of the language has led to several misunderstandings in both formal documentation as well as informal emails.

To the case in hand, I think this is yet another example of the continual erosion of accountability in this world, where the parents do not take responsibility for their children. The nanny state can do all it wants to legislate or offer pamphlets but at the end of the day the parents are the ones who decided to have a child and the responsibility of their upbringing are due to the parents… especially with the reduction in the powers of the teachers and schools to punish pupils. No wonder children run rampant these days as the only people who seemingly can punish them are their parents, who are usually the ones who will go soft due to that biological switch hardwired into them! I was very lucky to go to a school with huge grounds that prefects would happily run us malcontents around, and a CCF where disobedience was usually punished in ways that would probably be on the Daily Mail front page these days.

To the AC who may have posted several times (and may not be the one I’m replying to in my title), if you are scared of your child’s physical violence reaction then perhaps you need to work out where you went wrong while he grew up… or follow Steven Raith’s idea and let him meet Big Bubba in the local nick. In the long run, it will help him as he won’t be the biggest nor strongest nor most aggressive person in the world when he goes out into the big bad world and if he has that kind of attitude then someone will fix it for him in a bad way. I’m saying this as a 6’1 18.5st rugby player – I fortunately had the discipline growing up to be polite and develop into a reasonably well adjusted adult who has walked away unfazed from more than one punch in the chops and rarely had to fight my way out of anything.

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IT Angle

@Moria

Moria was fun but it's kinda like going back to Star Trek after watching Babylon 5. Or going back to playing on a carebear WoW server after playing pvp servers only for a while. You get to always thinking about the features it's lacking.

And no, I never played with that silly graphics tileset. What's with that?

An insect and a troll guarding a scroll of *Enchant Weapon*

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Not that costly

Think about how much it is for a one-month subscription to World of Warcraft.

Now think about how much booze that would buy.

Two pints. Two and a half if you're lucky!

If you drink more than two and a half pints per month does that make you addicted?

Some bozo implied that a teenager might just sneak out of the house at night and play WoW at their friends house. I've got a little message for you: get a grip!

If your teenage child's friends started knocking on the door at midnight and asking to use your computer would you let them? Would your teenage child happily sit for hours watching someone else playing WoW when they could be playing themselves?

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Stop

Parental controls - A user account option online.

You cant hold Blizzard accountable for any person playing their game until they collaspse when there has been controls to restrict access to ther game in the users account control panel for years.

To anyone that has children that you think plays too much WOW.

Log onto their account via the main web page and access the account managment option in the top right corner of the web page.You wil need to know the account name and password naturally.

If you dont know what they are well frankly you damn well should.

You have parental controls to restrict log on access so that they cannot play after a certain time of the day should you choose for them not to.

Simple!!

WOW is addictive? Its a great game to play (played since feb 2005) so yes I am addicted to it.

Im also addicted to nictone, movies, music, and resturants because i enjoy those an awful lot too.I dont stay up playing WOW until i collaspe because im a responsible person!

Like the 99% of people i know from WOW online.

There are a few jobless muppets in our guild that do bugger all else. but they are online alot because they are too lazy to get a job.

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168 hours a week too much?

I found the easiest way to stop myself wasting so much time in World of Warcraft was to make my children do all my farming. I set very reasonable quotas for reputation, gold and honour, which means some days they can even spend a few hours enjoying their free time activities such as sleeping or going to school.

The great part about this is I now only call in sick to work when I want to.

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Anonymous Coward

No WOW for kids

My kids are not allowed to play WOW or any other computer game. I can't think of a quicker way to rot a good mind. They aren't allowed to use the computer for any activity but school work or as a reference source. They've been taught that computers are useful tools, not a form of entertainment. The result is that they don't really care about the computer, but prefer books,conversation, playing outdoors, arts and traditional hoobies.

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Hey Parents! It's your responsibility to be a parent!!

@ raving angry loony:

"Yeah, and computer-illiterate parents are supposed to know how to set up parental controls? Most kids can usually run circles around their parents, since 24/7 surveillance isn't commonplace yet."

Computer illiterate parents shouldn't have computers in the house then, should they? You shouldn't have a gun in your house if you know nothing about guns, either. If you have it in the house, you, as the parent, have a responsibility to understand it. Be a parent.

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People look to blame Blizzard because Blizzard has lots of money. It's the same reason people go after tobacco companies. It's not as if tobacco companies held a gun to your head and said "SMOKE IT OR DIE!!" Speaking of guns, this blame game is akin to blaming Smith & Wesson because someone got shot - after all, the manufacturer did make the gun with the intent that it be fired. But wait, it's actually the person's fault that pulled the bloody trigger. Likewise, when a kid can't get enough, the game isn't hurting him, HE'S HURTING HIMSELF, and it's the parents' job to stop the kid from hurting himself.

Parents: stop trying to pawn off the responsibility of parenting your children on others (schools, governments, entertainment, etc). It is your job, and your job alone to raise your children. If you can't hack it, do the kid a favor and give him up for adoption. Incompetent, lazy, powerless, useless parents make me sick.

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@Michael

"Incompetent, lazy, powerless, useless parents make me sick."

Me too. Parents who're too lazy to teach their kids how to play properly are destroying the future of the World (of Warcraft). WoW as a babysitter is a tool responsible parents use to make sure they can meet their guild's raiding requirements, when they'd be otherwise inconvenienced by making meals, watching them play sports or helping with homework. But abusing this by allowing kids that suck ruins the raid for everyone.

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Stupid Parents breed Stupid Kids

Something that I witnessed this weekend that made me wish that apathy was illegal. My wife and I are at the local GameStop looking for family-appropriate games for our Wii (we have an 8-year old son). Another woman walks in with her 3 children, 2 boys a little younger than our son (I would say about 6-7) and a daughter around 5ish. What do the boys want? Halo. What does the idiot mom ask the store clerk for? Halo for her boys. The only thing that saved this woman from my involvement (and ensuing verbal thrashing) was the fact that she was clueless enough about the game to not know that it's an Xbox exclusive...and they have a PS3.

This is what's wrong with this country...parents that will give their "precious little children who could never do wrong" what ever they want...gods forbid the idiots spawning actually take a few seconds to research a game, maybe even look at the box and see that there is a parent-friendly rating on there? Most of these parents wouldn't take their children to see a "PG-13" rated movie, let alone an "R" rated one...why the hell would they buy a "T" or "M" rated game for their "lil' schnookums"? These are also the first ones to jump in to court about how "video games turned my kid into a homicidal, sex-addicted maniac!"

Grow a bleedin' pair and step up to your kids and tell them "NO". They don't deserve everything they want, and definitely don't need it. Be a fookin parent even if that means you're not their friend now. If you don't care enough to look at the box, then get rid of the game system, and for gods' sake never purchase a computer or subscribe to the internet. QUIT TRYING TO USE THE TELEVISION AND GAME SYSTEMS AS A SUBSTITUTE FOR PARENTING!

As for the kid dying, tragic but the blame doesn't lie with Blizzard or Warcraft. It lies where it always has...with the parents/guardians of the kid.

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Joke

I pity the real Crack addicts.

I dunno, you're addicted to Crack Cocaine. You've got no job, no money and nobody wants to know you. Your life revolves around your next fix. You've a string of theft convictions to fund your habit as long as your arm and you're seriously considering renting out your arse to pay for you next fix.

Just when you think your life can't possibly get any worse, some bunch of Swedish do-gooders put you in the same category as the Warcraft dweebs.

All you had left was your pride and what remained of your self-esteem and those bastards took it from you.

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WoW

I almost stayed awake for the entire article, almost......zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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Coat

WoW?

Is WoW Better Than Life?

btw, agree wholeheartedly with the "parent and grandparent" above and his rant. Part of a parent's duty is to protect, educate and otherwise take responsibility for their children. Trying to pass the blame to folk like Blizzard when their kids go out of control? It doesn't cut it.

One example of this I often like to use is the South Park movie, Bigger Longer & Uncut. Just replace Canada with Blizzard and you have exactly the same story.

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Parental "Oops"

To keep a kid from falling out with convulsions you don't need to stop them cold-turkey, you just have to make sure they eat once/twice a day. and sleep every day or two.

Then, you don't have to worry about watching them, but no-one will arrest you for criminal neglect.

If you can't get an exhausted, malnourished WoW geek away from a computer, I'm surprised you had the physical abilities to make said baby.

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So Austin ...

when did you move to Lightinghoof, and where the hell is that?

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Coat

The worst thing for this kind of problem . . .

Is the availability and (relative) ease of configuration of Private Servers.

There was a WOTLK private server available while the expansion was still in the Beta stages.

try keeping your kids off by taking away their pocket money, and you'll soon possibly find your home PC hosting their favorite server.

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