Gaming addiction is a pathological addiction to various games, predominantly games of chance. Computer games are often referred to here as well.
To denote the dependence of man on the game, the terms “game addiction” and “ludomania” are also used (from Latin ludo – to play and Greek μανία – attraction, passion).
Gaming addiction is apparent if a person often games away his money, makes deposits to buy various artifacts in computer games, etc. Gaming becomes the dominant life value, displacing social, family, professional and material values.
A person spends most of the time on gaming, treating all other duties as a residual. Since gaming is chronic, its characterizes by the inability of a person to resist the impulse to start the game. As a result, the patient is involved the game, despite life circumstances, which leads to the destruction of family life, social and professional problems.
The factors of gaming are the following:
- Environmental factors, such as the availability of computer games, as well as the repetitive promotion of gaming activities on television, radio, on the Internet in the form of various quizzes, etc. For example, in online games you can start playing for free, because it is pretty easy to get instant no deposit casino bonuses.
- Motivational factor, which many scientists consider as the predominant in the development of gaming addiction. It is the inner motive (psychological justification for the desire to play) that makes a person play. There are two important motives for the development of gaming.
- The first motive lies in the satisfaction of a person’s need for domination, risk, manipulation by other people and proving his own superiority.
- The second motive lies in the satisfaction of the need to avoid problems and real losses. The second motive is typical for people escaping from reality (maybe VR games will save the situation?).
In addition to these basic motives, the development of gaming addiction may be caused by other, superficial motives, such as:
- Interest in a new and unknown occupation
- prestige of participation in games
- desire to win.
Gaming addiction becomes permanent due to the opportunity to succeed, as well as pleasant sensations on the background of excitement in the game. When the addiction is formed, the person continues to play to win back and return all his material losses as well as to avoid problems.
- Family. When improperly educated or having bad relationship with family members, a person becomes mentally weak and vulnerable, which makes him easy to get involved in too heavily in gaming. In this case, addiction develops fast. Important family factors that pose a high risk of gaming addiction are the following:
- Lack of effective behavioral models in the senior family members (parents, grandparents, uncles and aunts don’t have role models that led them to success);
- Absense of clear roles for each family member (each family member does not have clear rights and responsibilities);
- Double standards for the reactions of older family members to the actions of the younger family members;
- Inflexibility, proneness to conflict and inconsistency in the attitudes of family members from different generations (different family members have different attitudes and do not try to reach a compromise, everyone tries to dictate his opinion, believing it to be the only right);
- Inadequate planning of the family budget with no consideration of the needs of all family members (the budget is planned considering the main goals and priorities of the person planning the budget).
- Personal factor. A person has the mental traits of a “potential player” and becomes addicted very fast.
- Economic factor. Since gaming is one of the most profitable spheres in the world, powerful corporations presented in the world market promote their interests in order to obtain maximum profits in various countries. To maximize incomes, corporations that own a gaming business (like Blizzard) are engaged in expansion, attracting people in the game. For this, companies use a strategy of shaping a fatalistic, playful and magical mind by frequent repetition of slogans that make the game attractive, such as, for example, “Our whole life is a game,” “He who doesn’t risk never gets to drink champagne “, etc.
When such slogans are repeated, and the game lifestyle is depicted as “cool”, “prestigious”, easy and pleasant, the minds of people are programmed with the idea that the game is good and right.
In some societies, active game promotion resulted in the culture of disregard for people who do not support the way of life of players. The formation of game and fatalistic way of thinking in people is also promoted by the broadcasting of numerous game shows on television, radio and on the Internet. The economic factor of involvement in the game is the manipulation of public perception in order to strengthen attraction to gaming in all community members.