Video game addiction has been around as long as video games have existed. So, why is League of Legends so addicting? In the case of League of Legends, being one of the most played video games in the world today, it’s no surprise that a good number of players get a little bit too hooked into putting in hours into playing League. The rising popularity of the game, as well as the improvement in gameplay quality and additional content, will only make it harder for gamers to stay away.
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What Is Video Game Addiction?
Video game addiction is characterized by the compulsive use or over-reliance of playing video games which have a negative impact on the person's physical health and general well-being. However, video game addiction is not as common as it is portrayed in news and media. With the video game scene rising and spreading, it's becoming a general concern to most people especially parents.
The League Of Legends Gameplay Model
Unlike the vast majority of other video games, League of Legends is non-linear. This means that League of Legends doesn’t have a definite stopping point, unlike story-driven video games which are easy to stop once there finished. Additionally, League of Legends offers a lot of achievement based rewards and a competitive atmosphere that promotes extended durations of gameplay. In this regard, it’s no wonder a lot of people have incorporated League in their everyday schedule.
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Why Is League Of Legends So Addicting?
A big factor in playing League of Legends is the rank system. While there are some people who claim to only play the game for the sake of a simple past time, it is no doubt that the vast majority of players take part in ranked games with the goal of eventually reaching the highest rank. To do this, some even put in the extra time to grind but if left unchecked, it eventually becomes an obsession which is difficult to stop.
2. Peer Pressure
Peer pressure doesn’t exactly need to be about your friends or people you know forcing you to play the game. It could also be due to how you want to be updated to the happenings of the game. Since League of Legends is such an international phenomenon, it’s no wonder that it comes up in everyday conversation. Being out of the loop may bother you so you try to play as much in order to be updated with the latest trends and news regarding the game.
3. Escaping from Reality
As much as it’s painful to admit, video games are a good outlet to escape the tragedies of everyday life. This may stem from bullying, grief, social anxiety, avoiding responsibility, or a heightened sense of imagination. In any case, League of Legends allows for the individual to release stress and anger through mechanics and even, as unfortunate as it is, the game’s chat function.
Much like peer pressure, the need to be updated with the game comes from both the general media such as news sites and social media. Most of the time, the addiction is brought about by fandom. This causes the individual to have an extreme attachment to an organization or player. If you’ve noticed, a lot of the people online are very vocal about their opinions towards certain players or organizations.
How To Know If A Person Is Addicted To League Of Legends
Just because a person plays League of Legends for an extended period of time, doesn’t always mean that the person is addicted to the game. It is important to note that addiction is an extremity caused by certain psychological, behavioral, or physical factors. While it’s always best for a professional to assess whether you are addicted, it’s not a bad idea to have a preliminary check before you go seek that professional advice.
1. Obsession over the game
When a person is noticeably extremely and unnecessarily vocal about his views and opinions about mentioning League of Legends even in conversations that don’t require it, you know something is wrong. Additionally, you’ll notice that people like these are difficult to pull away from the game. The over-reliance on the game creates both social problems and behavioral problems.
2. Irregular playing schedule
Professor Oak once said that there is always a time for everything. Most LoL players have set times they usually play the game. For some it is when they have free time, so if you find somebody playing when they have responsibilities and commitments such as during work or school that may be a sign. Also, having to play way beyond your normal sleeping schedule on a regular basis is also a good indication of possible addiction.
3. Inability to stop
Some individuals are just psychologically incapable of stopping themselves from playing the game. When you notice that it’s difficult for the individual to stop playing despite repetitive calling, the person may likely be addicted already. In extreme cases, a person, even though he/she already wants to stop they can’t bring themselves to get off the keyboard. This poses a serious threat to the individuals general wellbeing.
In the event that the person does get off from playing the game, he/she will be experiencing restlessness which is a type of withdrawal symptom. This includes constantly thinking about the game, being unable to sleep, making weird gestures and movements. Of course, this should only be in extreme cases where the person has become overdependent about the game and is very rare.
Quick Addiction Test
As a form of a quick addiction test, try to abstain from playing League of Legends for 48 hours. Also, avoid any news, updates, or conversations regarding the game during this time period. A normal person should be able to do this easily. However, if you think this is a difficult activity to do, then all the more reason you should do it. League of Legends is not an essential part of everyday life and not necessary for human beings to survive.
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Negative Effects Of Video Game Addiction
1. Distraction and Loss of Focus
Video game addiction can deter you from noticing other things. There will be times when you ignore people calling out to you or daydream during class hours which is due to your mind being pre-occupied by everything League of Legends. Having your mind filled with nothing else is dangerous and might get you in trouble on the road or in the streets.
2. Disregarding Responsibilities
Again, an addicted person may skip work or school in order to have more playing time. Not only this but some people also completely forget to eat during mealtimes which can cause harm to the body. Remember, even pros and streamers who earn money from playing the game don’t forget to do their responsibilities regularly.
3. Physical Health Deterioration
Aside from missing meals, video game addiction can also cause other aspects of your physical health to deteriorate. For example, prolonged hours in front of computer monitors causes eye strain which will not only deteriorate your vision but also cause brain and nerve damage. The lack of sleep can also cause you to be exhausted and unable to do physical tasks.
4. Loss of Social Life
Finally, spending your time only playing League of Legends can have a negative effect on your social life or your ability to socialize. Spending all your free time with the computer instead of spending some of it with friends is not good for personal growth. Especially if you’re the type of person that releases toxic and inappropriate comments in-game which should be used to communicate with your team.
If you believe that some of these symptoms apply to you and you think that you need to steer the direction of your life towards a brighter future, there are a few ways for you to achieve this without resorting to medication.
Again, we are stressing that the best way for you to know whether you are addicted or not is through professional help. Therapy is a proven road toward recovery. People with all kinds of addictions go to weekly support groups to share their concerns in their battle towards addiction. Video game addiction isn’t something you should be ashamed of but is something you should definitely be concerned about as it can affect you, your family, and your friends.
Talking with Family and Friends
If therapy sounds too intimidating or you don’t have the money to do it, then consider talking with family members or friends you are comfortable with and help them understand your situation. Most often than not, these are the people who give the best advice and make you feel welcome. Perhaps all you needed all along was someone you can talk about your problems with.
Medication is only for people who have lost complete control over themselves due to their video game addiction. This is usually prescribed by a therapist and only applies in extreme cases.
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