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Why Are Mobile Games So Addictive?

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Written by   354
2 months ago

September 10, 2022
Article No. 208

Four days ago. A few minutes after I woke up, I thought of not playing the game "Last Day on Earth". However, my will was not strong enough to resist the temptation. I thought I will just grab a freebie that comes every 25 minutes then stop playing.

Big mistake! I ended up playing for about three hours this morning!

Created Using PixelLab

Greetings my dear readers! Have you played a mobile game that you can't resist playing? If not, then good for you! But I know some people are hooked on playing video games. The game may be on a PC or a mobile device. If you're a parent, probably you have heard often the response:

"Just a few more minutes!"

or

"Wait! I will just finish that game!"

or

"After this last game!"

However, the few minutes extend to a few hours. The "last game" is followed by several last games.

That leads to the question of why are mobile games so addictive.


Disclaimer

I would like to emphasize that I am not an expert on this matter. I am not a behavioral scientist or whatever it is related to this subject. What I will share with you here is all based on my observation and understanding from what I have read and other various resources.


Why Are Mobile Games So Addictive?

Were you ever hooked on playing games even a simple but addictive e like the game Flappy Bird, which became popular almost overnight?

High-Quality Graphics

Perhaps the obvious eye-catcher is the high-quality and sometimes real-like graphics. I guess this is one of the factors that make games like Mobile Legends, PUBG, or Call of Duty attractive.

But some games doe not need to be as sophisticated as Mobile Legends, PUBG, or Call of Duty to be addictive. As I have mentioned, simple games with simple gameplay like Flappy Bird, and other games like Angry Birds, Bubble Shooter, Candy Crush can be addictive. And I'm not even talking about the mobile gambling apps like Tong-its Go, or any of those mobile poker games where the players can win (or lose) real money.

Image by besteonlinecasinos from Pixabay 

So what makes a game so addictive? Here are some of the characteristics that I have observed.

Competition

Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games or MMORPG type of games are massively popular. Why? Players are not just playing against the computer, but they are competing with other players.

They even test their "strengths" through PVP combats.

However, even in non-multiplayer games, players can still compete with each other by trying to beat the top score.

Quests, and Tasks

Different quests and tasks can make almost any game more interesting. Some quests and tasks require solving puzzles.

Some simply require a higher level of character or better equipment to accomplish. This means you have to pay more to complete the quest or task.

Screenshot of the time-limited quests/ events in The Last Day on Earth

Points and Rewards System.

Perhaps this is the main culprit... I mean ... the main reason why a game can be so addictive. Players feel excited whenever they see their "points" increase. It could be their experience points that will take their character to the next level. It can be in the form of "gold" or "coins" collected. But in games that are not under the play-to-earn category, these coins are just currencies within the game. But you can use these in-game currencies to buy in-game items and equipment.

Image by Darwin Laganzon from Pixabay 

Gradually Increasing Difficulty

As players progress in the game, the difficulty gradually increases. This makes the game challenging. Challenges with just the right difficulty make a game interesting. If it's too easy, the game will become boring. If it's too difficult, the game becomes frustrating.

What Causes Game Addiction?

According to studies, each time a player accomplishes a task finishes a level, or a quest, our body releases a chemical called dopamine. Each time dopamine is released into our system we get a feeling of pleasure. And the more dopamine is released the more we want. This is the same reason why people get addicted to social media. Each time we receive a like or a good comment, we get dopamine into our system.

The scary part is, that social media and these games are designed to trigger the release of dopamine into our system.

In Closing.

Unless we have not used a smartphone ever since it is more likely that we are hooked to social media or mobile games. If not, then most probably our body is getting a dose of dopamine from somewhere else, like gambling...

The question is, can we have a daily dose of dopamine in our system that will make us more productive?

Thanks for reading.


Image Credits:

Lead Image: by SAIYED IRFAN A from Pixabay  (With modification)

Interesting Read: https://gamequitters.com/how-dopamine-impacts-gaming/

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Comments

Cierto migo los juegos son una adicción muy fuerte, es como dice todo en exceso es dañino pero son muy divertido.

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2 months ago

Ah. That is quite true... That makes it more difficult to stop playing.

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2 months ago

Mabilis din ako maadik sa game before kuys. Pero ngaun laro Lang ako saglit or kapag nagpupupu 😂

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2 months ago

nako para sakin sir complicated tong mga to kaya di mo ko mapapalaro ever hehe.

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2 months ago

I am addicted to playing games like DLS and other football games, I guess i like mainly because of the graphics and hope Bitcoincash have a game that would support football lovers and other game lovers

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2 months ago

I can't tell of yo many hours a day I spend on video games. The funny part of it is that I'm not even good at it. Like I get trashed a lot on Fifa but damn I love playing video games.

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2 months ago

Don’t even get me started 😅 I wasted so many hours playing stupid games on my mobile 🙈

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2 months ago

The sad truth is... So have I 😟

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2 months ago

How beautifully you linked neuroscience with gaming addiction. In our country, gaming is at its peak. And the games which are considered as most addictive in Pakistan are PUBG and free fire.

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2 months ago

It's really the future indeed, where everything is digital hehe, what shall be more addicting when the metaverse comes to life na talaga hehe.

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2 months ago

Metaverse is already here... or out there rather... Soon (I'm afraid) we will be living in world similar to the movie "Ready Player One"

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2 months ago

True sir. Mobile games give an addiction to a person. I encountered the game Mobile Legends. There are a lot of individuals who addicted to this game.

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2 months ago

Games had too much addiction. Even my nephew has total stubborn when I called him for help. Yeah rewards are big factor contributing to games addiction.

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2 months ago