I was playing game called Racing Moto on Android phone. I had already made 10-15 attempts to cross 55,000 points. This was the score I achieved one day before. Every time I failed, game took nano second to restart and I was flying again. While playing, I couldn't take my eyes off, move or talk to anyone. And after several attempts, I realized that it’s not me playing game. It was game playing me!!
With the fast spread of smart phones, penetration of motion gaming has surged like anything. To name a few games Template Run, Racing Moto, Truck Parking are must-have in any Android phone. In common, all these games has circular path we have to run through, which means there is no end. Once we set a big score, subconsciously we keep trying to surpass our best and get stuck in an infinite loop. Our continuous attempts one after another results in addictive behaviour.
Anything is excess is harmful. So does games. Addictive game players suffer from various physical and mental disorders. The controlled situation of game doesn't let the person accommodate comfortably in real scenarios where situation is not controlled. This has reached a level that we have addiction centres providing cure to youngsters who are powerless over their addiction. Smith and Jones Addiction consultants, based in Netherlands is first to have formed a program to detox people from ill gaming habits.
Just like gaming, social networking and mobile messaging applications gets us in same vicious cycle. Just like the addiction increases gradually, the rehabilitation process also takes time. Gaming addiction is like food addiction. We should learn to live with it. After all, to get rid of the bad gaming habit, we cannot throw away computers and phones. Following is the standard guideline suggested by experts to overcome the addiction of games and social networking applications.
- Limit your gaming to specific hours of the day/week.
- Get out of inch size screen and meet real friends.
- Develop new hobbies
- Participate in extracurricular activities.
Technology will yield best results when controlled by humans. It will be havoc if technology starts controlling human. No matter how expert and connected we are virtually, it will never give fun and satisfaction we can avail from people who are most important to us.
Umair is Frappe's co-founder, VP - Partnerships, and mentor for Frappe School team.