Therapist Wants In-Game Treatment for WoW Addicts

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I laugh while reading this because the first person to start lecturing me about how much time im playing wow, WHILE im playing it, gets a nice swift /ignore from me and i go about my business

especially if i dont know the person and they just start outta no where..

I am capable of playing WoW for ridiculously long stretches of time, most of it spent futzing around in completely unproductive activities. But I am also capable of playing the Xbox for ridiculously long stretches of time and knitting for ridiculously long stretches of time. And my job? Dear lord, the hours I've been known to work are insane. Am I an addict? Maybe. But it's not exclusive to WoW. Would anyone be able to initiate a psychotheraputic conversation with me in-game? Even with my consent, if I'm actually playing, my hands and eyes are too busy to attend to deep, meaningful conversation. If the kid hasn't consented beforehand, don't we repeatedly warn kids against anonymous online adults who try to engage them in personal conversation? They won't think the person is a therapist, they'll think he's a pedophile.

Thank you. Like it or not people need this.
I quit WoW when I met the sorriest excuse for a human being ever, and if you disagree with what I am about to say, well then, I think that you need to take a good hard look in a mirror and reexamine your own priorities in life.
I was playing with a guy in SM when he said he would brb. When he came back, he said that his wife was annoying him and he told her to stop. After some discussion, he admitted that they were on their honeymoon and his wife was actually trying to "get some" but he wanted to finish the instance instead.
WTF people? How can stuff like this be aloud to happen??
I got rid of my account about a week later.

The only way I could see this really working at all, would instead of Blizzard waiving fee's would be to actual hire a group of therapists and have them work for Blizzard. It would be easier for the company to identify potentially "addicted" members of the game, be just creating a program to track game times and who is logging a certain amount of hours.

Something like xhours(xdays) = x and if the result is well let's say as a quick figure if over a week period you play 50 hours, which is 7.14 hours per day then they send someone into help. But then you get people paid to "play the game" instead.

What's to stop the kid from blocking them?

Cama Zots:
Thank you. Like it or not people need this.
I quit WoW when I met the sorriest excuse for a human being ever, and if you disagree with what I am about to say, well then, I think that you need to take a good hard look in a mirror and reexamine your own priorities in life.
I was playing with a guy in SM when he said he would brb. When he came back, he said that his wife was annoying him and he told her to stop. After some discussion, he admitted that they were on their honeymoon and his wife was actually trying to "get some" but he wanted to finish the instance instead.
WTF people? How can stuff like this be aloud to happen??
I got rid of my account about a week later.

Now I know what Yahtzee means when he says he hates what MMOs do to people.

God save us all from the clutches of Blizzard.

Blizzard ought to create a special class only for psychiatrists and therapists, the "Poop Sock". Their in-game avatars would be socks full of poop and their guild would be [Stop PoopSocking]

5 bucks says that the Therapists are addicted to it, and not showing the signs, and they just want it free.

Haha they are going to get addicted and thats when Blizzard will hit them with some bills.

I am addicted to WoW. I admit it. But I won't miss work or school over the game.

So... they're talking to blizzard employees about getting reduced subscription rates for people who are trying to get people to play the game less. Anyone else see a problem here?

In my mind, a WoW addiction is fairly easy to solve- leave the addicted alone. If you're, in anyway, whether you be a parent or spouse, supporting the addicted, then stop supporting them. Make them pay the bills. Kick them out. If they can keep playing WoW and get along fine, then what's the problem? If they can't, then they'll quickly straighten out or be homeless. It isn't heroin, people. It's not life threatening. Stop enabling them and things should work out fine.

Gawd people Self-Disapline...learn some.

Too much or too little (of somthing you like) is unhealthy. Balance is key. *head wobble*

I like WoW, I stop myself when I play too much, Somtimes I over play, other days I don't at all.
This therapist ingame thing just made me laugh like hell though.
You really think Blizzard are going to support this? Okay maybe they will...knowing it will fail miserably. You can't raid and have a chat session about your addictions, it's just not possible. XD PvPing is even worse, at least in raiding if you're a tank or a dps and you only have to keep an eye on your rotation for a while you can slip in a word, but arena's you have 1-3-5 people trying to eat your flesh, having a little therapy session during that isn't going to bode well.

Now I must go sleep after a brutal session of Ulduar raiding and hypocritical speech there. But I have nothing else to do all week and I'm a big girl...and sick...and [insert well thought out excuse here].

I can just see her stand in Orgrimmar, offering help through the marketplace chat.

"Yet those most affected by the game don't exhibit conventional warning signs"

That quote right there made me laugh. Because ya know, being at the computer for 16 hours a day isn't a sign of addiction or anything like that.

Erana:
At first it sounds stupid, but all in all, I think it will work. It doesn't matter to Blizzard if they play a healthy amount or not, as long as they get PR and a supsrciption fee, of course.

Yep.

Plus, if they let the addicts get ingame treatment, parents will be happy and have no reason to cancel the subscription.

But i love playing Wow Q_Q

So in order to get rid of your addiction of playing a certain game, you need to play the game? And how this counselor get payed? Gold? Rare items?

I might just return from my break from WoW just to see the gnomes in white coats walking around...

1: Game Addiction is a Joke, refer here for more details: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kNRWvabBRDc

2: There is a freaking parental control menu that allows you to regulate the amount of time your kids play, good GOD parents...

Maybe ill start playing wow again and get the WoW shrink to see whats up with the old cranium and the wow card is much cheaper then a real shrink.

Next up; cure your alcoholism over cocktails at the bar.

Or kick that nasty coke habit with this special nose-cleaning powder.

Seriously, though. This could work and be extremely beneficial to those who really are throwing away their lives just to get epic mounts. In essence, it's an environment they're comfortable in so maybe they'll be more willing to open up.

Either that or they'll put their therapist on ignore or worse gank them.

Great point Fanusc101, and captain obvious that would be a terrible boss to fight. Insane hp, and each line of text typed slows character and lowers attributes. Must take out the psychiatrist before the party is turned to stone. Eventually a hollow husk, or husks are all that remains, forcing the players back into the real world.

I see a great deal of hunting of psychiatrists, luring them to pvp servers.

Embarrassed "addict": Yeah, I spend 16 hours on a day at least. I can usually be found ____ next to the ______. If I spot you I'll take a break and we can talk. I'm interested in hearing what you have to say. I... might have a problem.
Psychiatrist n00b: I'm glad you recognise you have a problem, this is a good first step. I'll look for you there tomorrow.

Psychiatrist is ambushed by a party of psychiatrist killers. Hilarity ensues.

people seriously needs to get a life... i play WoW, but its only about 7-8 hours a week... whoever needs therapy for this shit is probably people who is less social than aggresive rottweilers.

Cpt_Oblivious:
The psychiatrist will probably play as a boss somewhere. He has no attacks, but he persaudes you to quit the game instead.

or he everytime you hitted him, he broke all your equipment, confiscated all your gold and items and reduced all your characters to level 1 and changed all your characters names to "stop playing dunce".

and he would follow you around everywhere. (he would only come to people who had been online for more than 14 hours that day.

i defo agreee

Amarok:
1: Game Addiction is a Joke, refer here for more details: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kNRWvabBRDc

2: There is a freaking parental control menu that allows you to regulate the amount of time your kids play, good GOD parents...

At one moment in the video the guy says "I play 12 hours each day" and later he ridicules the idea of addictions itself so I think that this nullifies the complete reasoning. We all know by now that WoW can be an addictive game, that in itself is not at question here. And if you want to convince yourself then here's an interesting blog posts along with comments, and after 2 years it's still going:

http://www.askapadwe.com/81/are-a-lot-of-people-really-addicted-to-world-of-warcraft/

This is hilariously absurd. It's not the game's fault that it's good. It's the children's fault for not having self-control, or the parent's fault for paying for something they view as an "addiction". Christ, I bet bet most Xbox Live junkies spend more time in a FPS online than the average WoW player spends logged in, but of course - thats ok. Whats the difference between leveling to 80 and prestiging a few times in COD4? (besides the the fact that level 80 would take far less time)

Hopefully the public will wake up one day to the fact that it's just another game, in fact perhaps far more social than most games that kids use for forms of escapism.

And as for the shrink asking for a free account to scare away Blizz's customers... Are they serious?

I do not play the game, from what I've heard and seen from this site and my friends? We just need a plate of cold turkey, not some headhunter therapist looking to get trapped within this game like the rest of them.

Cama Zots:
Thank you. Like it or not people need this.
I quit WoW when I met the sorriest excuse for a human being ever, and if you disagree with what I am about to say, well then, I think that you need to take a good hard look in a mirror and reexamine your own priorities in life.
I was playing with a guy in SM when he said he would brb. When he came back, he said that his wife was annoying him and he told her to stop. After some discussion, he admitted that they were on their honeymoon and his wife was actually trying to "get some" but he wanted to finish the instance instead.
WTF people? How can stuff like this be aloud to happen??
I got rid of my account about a week later.

Because you are gullible and take everything said to you over the internet for granted? The amount of times i saw the excuse "brb neighbors house on fire" greatly exceeds the amount of fires that occurred in the vicinity of any wow player's homes let alone the ones in my group. How is "brb wife wants sex" any different? I occasionally go get a drink with the message "sec, angry bear outside". Also, since when is the nadir of humanity a guy who may or may not have said someone that they like to finish what they started before doing something, which is generally a positive trait that many politicians lack? What happened to the guy who killed a child while speeding and then sued the family for damage to his car a few articles back? Is he somehow better then a wow player?

Gunner_Guardian:
You know... this might just work..

One potential risk though, is psychiatrist being caught into the world as well.

Yea, that's what I thought. "Dr. Hartman, you have an appointment."
"GET OFF MY BACK I'M ON A QUEST DAMMIT"

To actually discuss the ideas raised, ignoring the funny side parts of the article;

The problem with having shrinks in-game is exactly the same problem raised by bar staff or casino workers approaching people on their poker machines. Stated in your RCG (Responsible Conduct of Gambling), you can not approach a person on a poker machine and offer them help with what you might see as an addiction. Even if you know this person only gets $200 a week in government support, and they come down every Thursday and put it all into the poker machines, and are known for stealing and lying to support their addiction, you are not allowed to interfere. The decision is theirs alone to take the steps necessary, and you are not allowed to force your opinion of a good or bad lifestyle on them. You are only allowed to make them aware of the available services. The arguement is "who am I to judge what is addictive? If a person puts $10k a day through the pokies, who am I to judge that their lifestyle can't support it?".

The same technically applies here. Who is any one person to judge that someone else is 'addicted'? What is 'addicted'? Is 'addicted' someone who plays for 10 hours a day, yet even if they didn't, has nothing else interesting in their lives or anything else they wanted to do anyway? Truely, it may indeed be all that the person wants to do, not that they are missing out on anything else they want to be doing. And if the person can support themselves doing that (money and situation wise), why would it be a bad thing? What about for 15 hours a day? When does that magic situation appear? It is up to the person to seek help for the situation.

This leads to the setup that basically as far as this will go is for the advertisement of free counseling services that are available if the person so chooses to go to them.

There are obvious differences here between a child and an adult in this situation. For children who are addicted, well there IS someone to judge here, and it's called the parent. And there are plenty of situations here to control this. a) Parental control on accounts on the wow website. b) Password and payment control over the account, c) Internet access at the house, d) Understanding why your child finds the game so addictive.

A note on the last one of those: The game is not addictive in the sense like nicotine. There is no magical drug released that causes kids to crave it like some depraved meth addict. It's merely the endorphines released by the enjoyment the child feels from achievement and improvement that the game is based around. Maybe if you showed your children that there are other things in life (because surely they haven't had the chance to experience everything in life yet), that you can achieve this in. On the other hand, is your child using the game as an escape from life or because they find life too hard compared to in-game?

Yes, therapists can't reach the kids in their bedrooms. Their parents can though. Parents will notice a drop in grades, parents will notice no social interaction, parents will notice lack of physical activity. If they don't, or don't act on it, it is their call. If there isn't anything to notice, maybe it isn't as big of a problem.

The concept seems a little mixed up to me. Play the game to talk with a therapist to tell you to stop playing the game so much... so if you get the urge to play again... you must play again for the therapist to tell you to stop playing...

As for Blizzard helping, why would they essentially pay (via discount or free access) for therapists to play with the intent of convincing people to play less? Not good business. As for they should be held responsible for being addicted and need to do something about it (not in the article, but brought up), no, no they shouldn't. Blizzard is not responsible for the gaming addiction any more than casinos are for gambling addiction, bars are for alcoholism, tobacco companies are for tobacco addiction, or the porn industry is for porn addiction. Just because they produce it doesn't mean that you must consume it. Know your own limitations and take personal responsibility. If you are a dependant, your provider needs to take that responsibility.

Also, in practice, /ignore <guy who just told me I have problems> will destroy the whole concept.

Noted in the article it says:

"A recent report by Sweden's Youth Care Foundation described World of Warcraft as "more addictive than crack cocaine". The game, which attracts almost 12 million players every month..."

There's just the tiniest difference between chemical addiction/dependancy and "good feeling" reinforcement. The way they wrote the second line almost seems to indicate that 12 million new players come every month, rather than that 12 million people play every month. Continuing players are not attracted every month.

Nuke_em_05:
*snip*
The way they wrote the second line almost seems to indicate that 12 million new players come every month, rather than that 12 million people play every month. Continuing players are not attracted every month.

Obviously. Media being media and using wording to ambiguate the understanding of people who are not taking every phrase as completely literal.

Next thing you know, they will want to cure cocaine addiction by holding meetings in a crack house.

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