Gaming Addiction: A Cautionary Tale

Yesterday’s New York Times ran a fascinating profile of George Yao, a 25 year-old gamer who, for six months earlier this year, was ranked number one in Clash of Clans. How did he do it? Just as you’d probably expect: by spending lots of time and money into the game.

Yao started playing the game early on and began spending more and more time building his army, helping his clan, and attacking other villages. The obsession eventually became so extreme that, to quote the article, “At one point, he was bringing five iPads into the shower with him, each wrapped in a plastic bag, so that none of his accounts would go inactive.”



Eventually, due to travel for his job, Yao had to take a break from playing the game, which gave him the distance he needed to realize his obsession had become unhealthy and allowed him to quit playing the game entirely. On the plus side, his involvement in Clash of Clans has landed him a new job.

Be sure to read the article, and see if you can see a bit of yourself in any of Mr. Yao.

2 thoughts on “Gaming Addiction: A Cautionary Tale

    • Freemium games such as this tap into the same part of the brain as gambling does and creates an environment designed to exploit addictive tendencies. I honestly predict that in years to come we will be reading about more and more people suffering from gaming addiction.

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