Video game addiction in kids is becoming one of the prevalent problems faced by parents today. Dual income families or those with both parents working are more prone to have such problems especially those that barely have time to check on their kids. Being aware of the children’s interests and regulating their access in video games can help in preventing kids from being hooked on video games and apps.
Limiting access to video games and game apps doesn’t stop at setting a strict schedule for playing video games. Scrutinizing the types of games that they play is more crucial than setting time limits. Exposing kids to violent games may have a negative effect on the child’s aggression or desensitize them to violent acts. There are also games that are addicting by nature like Sims and Minecraft. These games may seem to be harmless games that encourage the creativity of the players in building and designing dwellings and in making their own characters. Unfortunately, the players can easily get hooked in building virtual worlds with their own hands and unwittingly lead them to game addiction.
There are several addictive factors in Minecraft that can get the kids hooked on it. As an endless game, it takes away the time factor that usually signals the players that it is time to stop. Players are also prompted to keep on building so they are basically performing a never ending task as well. Additional challenges like zombies, spiders and monsters are also there to keep the players engaged in the game. Another factor that makes this game addictive is curiosity. It encourages the players to explore the different landscapes of the game to find building materials and choose suitable locations for their houses. Dark corners and caves also offer the excitement of encountering unknown elements that could attack and kill the player’s character. The threat of starting all over again upon the character’s death drives the player to continue working on building and discovering implements and protective shelter continuously.
Teens who already spend a considerable time in building their virtual domain in minecraft are likely candidates for video game addiction. Setting the ground rules for video game playing shouldn’t be the only step taken by parents. Thinking up alternative activities that would be more fun and interesting than video games can keep your child away from game addiction.