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Role Playing (Games)

Gamers Are Fitter (and Sadder) Than You Think 341

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the crying-on-a-treadmill dept.
missb writes "According to NewScientist.com, online gamers are no 'couch potatoes'. US researchers quizzed players of the role-playing game EverQuest II, and found adult gamers to be in better physical condition than the average American. The downside, however, was the gamers reported more cases of depression and substance abuse than their compatriots."
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Gamers Are Fitter (and Sadder) Than You Think

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  • Erm... (Score:5, Funny)

    by clang_jangle (975789) * on Thursday September 18, 2008 @08:53AM (#25053325) Journal
    FTA:

    Researchers at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, the Palo Alto Research Center, also in California, and the University of Delaware in Newark, quizzed 7000 players of the role-playing game EverQuest II about their physical and mental health. Participants were offered a specially created virtual weapon as an incentive - the "Greatstaff of the Sun Serpent". The researchers then combined the survey responses with statistics about players' online activities and playing habits.

    And we know the results are accurate, because they're working with a demographic famous for honest and forthright self-disclosure.

    IOW: DUH!

    • Re:Erm... (Score:5, Funny)

      by i_liek_turtles (1110703) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @08:57AM (#25053369)
      If anything, most of the players' right arms are in better physical condition than the average American's.
      • Re:Erm... (Score:5, Interesting)

        by cayenne8 (626475) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:03AM (#25053445) Homepage Journal
        Well, if by 'better shape' they mean less obese that the avg. American, it is probably due to them being too engrossed by the game to go buy junk food. They're not in better shape, they've just starving a bit more than the average US citizen.
        • by Minwee (522556)

          it is probably due to them being too engrossed by the game to go buy junk food.

          If only there was some way to solve that problem [sony.com]... I'm sure that somebody must be working on this somewhere [worldofwarcraft.com].

        • Re:Erm... (Score:5, Informative)

          by garcia (6573) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:27AM (#25053725) Homepage

          They're not in better shape, they've just starving a bit more than the average US citizen.

          When I considered myself a "gamer" (Q1CTF) I was a Division I athlete attending a state university with ready access to tons of junk food and recreational enhancements that I readily consumed in greater amounts than I could even again. But because I was in college, and working out twice a day 5.5x a week, I was in great shape. I have a feeling that while the age range for those that consider themselves "gamers" is widening, the majority of people are still HS and college aged kids who have a bit more of an active lifestyle than the rest of us that work in some boring office tower all day and then retire home for an evening of various PC or console games.

          • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

            by dwiget001 (1073738)

            Ii play EQ2, have for years.

            I am also a competitive fencer (olympic style sword-fighting).

            I am in very good shape.

            I also rarely drink (a beer or two maybe every 2 or 3 months)

            About the only substance I could be called upon for abusing would be water (I live in Florida, gotta stay very well hydrated).

            And, gosh darn it, I am very happy.

            Obviously, they didn't survey me.

            • Re:Erm... (Score:5, Insightful)

              by Sinbios (852437) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @10:27AM (#25054657) Homepage
              I don't think you understand how statistics work.
            • by gnick (1211984)

              Slashdot attracts a lot of outliers - And they're even more prominent because the outliers (and occasional outliars) are the ones motivated enough to post to disprove stereotypes. I believe that there are a lot of gamers out there that are athletic and happy. But, in spite of FP's accurate assessment that gamers may game the system, I tend to believe the researchers results. Many gamers are obsessive (I know I was). And sitting down to game immediately after finishing school often took me well into the

            • Re:Erm... (Score:5, Funny)

              by cayenne8 (626475) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @11:14AM (#25055439) Homepage Journal
              "I also rarely drink (a beer or two maybe every 2 or 3 months)"

              I feel sorry for those people that don't drink.

              When they get up in the morning, that is the best they're gonna feel ALL DAY.

              :)

        • Re:Erm... (Score:5, Interesting)

          by Hatta (162192) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:38AM (#25053891) Journal

          You're not kidding. I can't count the meals I've missed because I wanted "just one more turn!" at Civilization.

        • They're not in better shape, they've just starving a bit more than the average US citizen.

          Wrong. They're effectively cutting the excess calories that the average american consumes. And I don't think they eat less protein and vitamins than the average american.

        • by gad_zuki! (70830)

          I dont think that's it. Its easy to snack while playing an MMO.

          I think the unspoken issue here is that America's obesity problem is tied in with the poorer classes. The poorer you are the better chance you have of being obese.

          Gamers who can dedicate 4+ hours a day to a game tend to be middle class. They can afford the time, hardware, etc to play these games. A lot of mmo gamers are students and youth generally translates into health. Computer gaming, as opposed to console gaming, has a couple barriers to e

        • Well, if by 'better shape' they mean less obese that the avg. American, it is probably due to them being too engrossed by the game to go buy junk food.

          Or, it could be that the gamer demographic tends to skew towards the lower end of the age spectrum, and our health tends to deteriorate as we grow older?

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Creepy (93888)

          Hmm... if I go by the people I know that play WoW (sorry, I don't know any EQ2 players - Guild Wars yes, Conan yes, but the majority I know play WoW), most I know are in better-than-average physical shape. In fact, I know only two overweight people that play WoW, but I know many more overweight people that do not.

          As for depression, I can see that - I think many adult MMORPG players that stick with it are stretched to the limits by daily stress (whether it be work, kids, schedule, or whatever) and use it as

        • Re:Erm... (Score:5, Funny)

          by Hoi Polloi (522990) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @11:32AM (#25055765) Journal

          I have very strong typing muscles now, get regular leg exercise from nervously bouncing it under my desk, and have powerful bladder muscles from holding it in during raids.

      • Of course, that's the arm I use to reach for the Cheetos.

      • by cashman73 (855518)
        Left arms are, too,... Most of these players "multitask", if you know what I mean,... ;-)
      • I don't see why. The left hand controls in game movements in most setups. The right hand typically just presses the odd button or waggles the mouse.

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by kv9 (697238)

          The right hand typically just presses the odd button or waggles the mouse.

          oh you bet it waggles!

      • Re:Erm... (Score:5, Funny)

        by just_another_sean (919159) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @12:01PM (#25056299) Homepage Journal

        If anything, most of the players' right arms are in better physical condition than the average American's.

        I like to use my left actually, just to mix it, um, wait what, games? Um, never mind.

    • Re:Erm... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:02AM (#25053437)
      "Hey, answer this questionnaire and get mad 3p1c wepp0nz!"

      "Sure. Multiple choice, excellent. A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A Now give me my sodding purple."
    • As in all of these surveys do they disclose how many people refused to answer, and how did they keep the answers honest

      I love the surveys of teenagers that ask them questions about illegal activities, most of them will answer one thing in a group, another on their own and another again with adults

    • by HardCase (14757)

      Statistics be damned! I'm fat and happy as a pig in shit. Although I have to admit that the thought of grinding my paladin from level 70 to 80 in Wrath of the Lich King does make me a little morose.

    • I am wondering if by better shape they mean they are skinnier then the average Fat american. That would make sence as they are so involved in the game they do not eat as much (boredom food) and will probably only stop to eat when they are very hungry. Not that doesn't meen they are Fit. A Fat man can be more Fit then a skinny one. I know some skinny gammers and I am a bit overweight. However I can do a 10 mile hike in the woods and end up much better then the gammer as while I may have more fat, I also hav

  • Depression (Score:5, Funny)

    by MrSmith0011000100110 (1344879) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @08:53AM (#25053327) Homepage Journal
    I'd be depressed too if my level 9 elf lost the holy mantle of protection in a battle against a level 15 ranger. I mean come on now....In real life I'd destroy him with my +20 sword.
  • Truth. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by davidangel (1337281) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @08:53AM (#25053331)
    MMORPG is a substance.
  • by Nursie (632944) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @08:53AM (#25053333)

    Not that I do either, but the fact of illegal substance use is not evidence of a problem itself, more an indicator that the person has little regard for this area of law, and may be disconnected from society/not buy into its values. This links up with depression and dissatisfaction.

    • by b96miata (620163) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:00AM (#25053411)

      It's a bias you *always* have to account for in articles about public health, unless they come from the most unbiased clinical sources possible. (and even then, summaries by mass media usually throw the abuse moniker in)

      To a large portion of the media/"public health" professionals, any use of an illegal substance, even moderate and responsible, is "abuse". These are the same people who define 5 drinks in 24 hours as a "binge".

      • by Nursie (632944) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:08AM (#25053519)

        It's a shame, because it affects the conclusion. IMHO it should be -

        Gamers disaffected with society, resulting in depression, supporting evidence consisting of substance use...

        When what we'll get is

        "Gamers depressed! Turn to drugs!" or "Games depress people and are a gateway to drug use!" or "Drug use causes depression and can lead to gaming!"

        • by flonker (526111) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:40AM (#25053917)

          or "Depressed people more likely to self medicate with drugs and computer games!"

          Correlation is not causation.

          • by Luyseyal (3154)

            An aside: Your comment reminded me that I'm going to tag the next "Important Mathematical Theorem Proved" article with "correlationisnotcausation".

            Thanks.
            -l

            P.s., this is the song I wrote to remind me to go on a very strict diet, "I'm sorry that I got fat; I will slim down". -- Wesley Willis

          • has become a self-reflexive meme, especially on slashdot, used without thought

            well guess what: finding a correlation is the first step in establishing causation, and it is entirely logical to conjecture a causative arrangement once a correlative conneciton has been established

            so in the future, i would suggest that you, and anyone else reading this comment who loves vomiting "correlation is not causation" as a substitute for actual thought, to spell out exactly why you think there is no causative arrangement here, or in any other discussion

            because i, and many others i think here on slashdot and elsewhere are pretty sick of the smarmy "correlation is not causation" kneejerk response

            its nothing more than intellectual laziness at best, but most usually intellectual dishonesty

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by Thiez (1281866)

              You are right. Even the article is tagged "correlation is not causation". Nowhere in the article or the summary is said 'Gaming causes X'. If anyone has bothered to read it (Welcome, you must be new here, haha we're having so much fun) they would have noticed that the researchers SPECULATE on causes for the differences between gamers and other people, but they don't say X causes Y. Because they know that they can't prove that. Because they KNOW "correlation is not causation".

              GGP says:

              > It's a shame, beca

        • by sorak (246725)

          It's a shame, because it affects the conclusion. IMHO it should be -

          Gamers disaffected with society, resulting in depression, supporting evidence consisting of substance use...

          When what we'll get is

          "Gamers depressed! Turn to drugs!" or "Games depress people and are a gateway to drug use!" or "Drug use causes depression and can lead to gaming!"

          The worst one was when it got paraphrased as "Paris Hilton-Lindsey Lohan Catfight".

    • by DarthVain (724186)

      Article is a bit light on the details...

      Substance abuse? Could that just be gamers smoking pot, 'cause you know like that never happens!

      As for depression and the like well there could be a number of reasons for that.

      However consider the demographic. Mostly boys, and mostly younger. That may skew the results a bit.

      Also when making comparisons to the "average American" it might not make sense if the average American is a 50 year old as compared to a 25 year old average.

      In any case not enough detail in the art

    • It's only abuse if the drugs don't consent!

    • where all drugs were 100% legal, including meth, heroin, cocaine, etc., the use of these substances would still be seen as a mental health issue

      because it is not mentally normal to need a foreign substance to support your brain chemistry

      it may be harmless, yes, but look at any cigarette smoker and you pretty much have a compelling picture of the parasitism that is substance addiction

      anyone who doesn't NEED drugs understands what i am talking about

      and if you say you don't NEED a certain drug, and are right n

      • by Nursie (632944) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @12:30PM (#25056705)

        "where all drugs were 100% legal, including meth, heroin, cocaine, etc., the use of these substances would still be seen as a mental health issue"

        Those ones you mentioned, perhaps so. Other substances less so, clearly depending on whether people are exhibiting addictive behaviour.

        "because it is not mentally normal to need a foreign substance to support your brain chemistry"

        Agreed. Where exactly was "need" mentioned?

        "anyone who doesn't NEED drugs understands what i am talking about"

        I don't understand what you're talking about and it's been years since I transgressed the law in this area. You've jumped straight from me saying "not all drug use is abuse" to accusing me of being an addict.

        "and if you say you don't NEED a certain drug, and are right now formulating a rationalization against these words of mine, then congratulations: you are probably an addict. an addict needs a hard, reactive wall of rationalization to convince themselves to constantly need a foregin substance for their brain chemistry"

        You're barking up the wrong tree mate. My complaint was the immediate anti-drug stance (i.e. no qualification of the word abuse) taken by the media. You're the one coming up with talk about addiction, habits etc.

        "in fact your words above "an indicator that the person has little regard for this area of law, and may be disconnected from society/not buy into its values" screams rationalization"

        Please explain. It is now very commonplace for people to smoke weed, however doing so implies a disregard for the law of the land. It does not necessarily imply addiction, any more than going for a beer with your buddies after work implies alcoholism.

        "using drugs has absolutely nothing to do with being countercultural."

        Didn't say it did, I said it implied lack of respect for that area of law and not buying into society's values, notably the ones that brought that law into being and keep it in place.

        "there are many people who buy all of a society's questionable values who become addicts (rush limbaugh) and there are plenty of counterculture icons who don't use drugs at all"

        Again with the addiction! I would also suggest that Rush does not buy into the crap he spews forth.

        "there are plenty of counterculture icons who don't use drugs at all"

        So?

        "or, put another way, when it comes to being counterculture and using drugs, correlation is not causation ;-)"

        Yes, but when it comes to taking illegal drugs you are breaking the law, this shows explicitly that you don't respect that part of the law or the social values that brought it into being and keep it there. It's pretty simple.

        I'm not trying to paint some sort of counterculture mystique here, just say it is possible to use some of these things without being or becoming an addict or an "abuser", and that if you do you probably don't fully buy into the values of the society you find yourself in as you are going directly against them.

      • by hesiod (111176) <`moc.liamg' `ta' `reierhcskoon'> on Thursday September 18, 2008 @12:36PM (#25056837)

        > if you say you don't NEED a certain drug, and are right now formulating a rationalization against these words of mine, then congratulations: you are probably an addict.

        False dichotomy much? If someone smokes pot once a month, then they are a dirty addict? Once a year? Once a week? Once a day, just because they enjoy it so much?

  • In other news, the Panic Office reports that section 917 may have been hit. Activate the following procedure:
  • by NoisySplatter (847631) <noisysplatter AT gmail DOT com> on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:00AM (#25053409)
    From the article:

    The average gamer also engages in vigorous exercise once or twice a week, which the researchers say is more than most Americans.

    This just in! Both chair throwing and jumping around like a monkey count as vigorous exercise.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by andy19 (1250844)
      Don't forget masturbation. I'm surprised it's only once or twice a week though, with this demographic.
  • by L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:00AM (#25053417)
    Alegory:

    - Faster than your average snail
    - Larger than your average sand grain
    - Truthier than your average Scientology book
    - Funnier than your average /. post
  • I need to get more diazepam for my next clan battle in counterstrike.
    • by arth1 (260657) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:58AM (#25054139) Homepage Journal

      Speaking of other games -- who made the erroneous extrapolation that what applies to Everquest II players will necessarily apply to "gamers"? The "researchers", the slashdot submitter or the editor?

      Perhaps there is a common cause for depression, playing EQ2 and being "healthy" (or did they mean "not overweight", and made another erroneous extrapolation?), and perhaps not.

      In any case, this doesn't say anything about gamers in general. To use a car analogy for a change, this is like studying a group of people who own a Ford Explorer, and then extrapolate this to draw conclusion about drivers.

  • by adml_shake (1196483) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:01AM (#25053425)
    since when has an evercrack player ever gotten away long enough to score some drugs? Or have a way to pay for them? Most of the ones I know of can't stop long enough to make the walk out of the basement to go raid the medicine cabinet in the bathroom.
  • Proof (Score:5, Funny)

    by MyLongNickName (822545) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:02AM (#25053439) Journal

    I am about to prove that the average Slashdotter is more healthy, and gets more sex than the general public.

    Please reserve this thread for discussions of your physical fitness level and love life. I will start.

    First, before work every morning, I run a marathon. On the weekends, I do triathlons(one each day). Ofcourse, I do this while carrying 12kg dumbbells in each hand (I drop to 8kg when swimming).

    Each evening I pleasure three supermodels except during lent when I drop to one due to my highly religious beliefs.

    Anyone else have any data to add to this research?

  • Substances (Score:5, Funny)

    by pizza_milkshake (580452) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:04AM (#25053465)
    Substances like soda and frosting.
  • by the_skywise (189793) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:04AM (#25053471)

    They never WIN...

    YAAAYYY!!! I'm level 8...

    ooh... but I'm not level 9...

    Games like that are a sharp contrast of what you have/haven't achieved until you top out the game... and then it's on to the next game.

    • Hah! I am level 822545 while you haven't even crossed 200,000 yet. I can't imagine how depressed YOU are!

    • yes but you forgot to mention: YAY I'm level 8, wow I got my wish for a silver dragon scale mail ... You've been killed by a newt.

      repeat, and that's where the depression comes in ...
    • Another way to think of it is they win every time they level, and the next level is the next "game".

      So in fact, you're getting 60 (or 70, or 80) "mini games" in one.

  • In related news, a Norwegian study shows that World of WarCraft players at level 60 are only half as depressed as those with level 30 characters.
  • heyho. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by apodyopsis (1048476) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:18AM (#25053623)
    so people suffer from depression and substance abuse when they spend most of their time indoors by themselves and most of their friends are virtual?

    in what fashion is this news?

    any doctor from the 50s could of predicted this given the symptoms/way of life of a hard core gamer. they'd of been horrified to learn that most of us sit in a chair for hours at a time hammering like poor possessed souls on little rows of buttons. as for junk food and long range commutes - who knows what they would of thought?
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by oxidiser (1118877)
      I've often wondered why gamers are the pariahs of the home entertainment world. It's much more acceptable to society if you lay on your couch all night and stare at the idiot box. I'll bet if you described the two activities to a doctor from the 50s he'd be slightly more concerned about the person doing literally NOTHING than the gamer who has to at least use his brain and move (albeit very little). I play MMOs and I'm not "hammering like [a] poor possessed soul" on my keyboard. What the hell does that eve
      • fair comment. but that "hammering on keys in a chair" I actually meant as a working place! sorry I guess I should of specified that I meant the change in the working demographic from the 50s. doh! it was clear in my head anyhow....

        good comment about couch potatoes..
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by kv9 (697238)
          if you hate your job that much why don't you quit and go do something adventurous. like, I don't know, windowcleaning skyscrapers. that sounds fucking XXXXXXXXXXXXTREME!
  • Their tendency to fitness caused them to abuse substances, and that caused them to attempt online games, and the subsequent grind cause them to become depressed. Ummm. The crowds they met online pressured them to start drug use, and they had to start running from the law. Ummm. Their drug abuse caused them to meet people who were into online games, and that caused... Darn. This correlation / causality stuff is hard.

    -Loyal

  • ... is a question people should ask themselves. Which is more worth: be fitter and an addict, or be slightly obese and not an addict with no depression problems.

    I know what I would choose!

  • .. the results would be similar to that of a couch potato.
  • I don't doubt this for one second, from all the coughing and bong water bubbling I've heard over xbox live while playing GTA4.
  • Put all your money into video games, drugs and therapy and give our economy a boost!

  • by argent (18001) <peterNO@SPAMslashdot.2006.taronga.com> on Thursday September 18, 2008 @09:56AM (#25054121) Homepage Journal

    I bet if you performed a self-selected survey on any group you'd get slightly better than average results.

  • Note (Score:2, Insightful)

    by soast (690658)
    depression and substance abuse = better physical condition
  • by rgviza (1303161) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @10:03AM (#25054235)

    I'd agree with this. I just cancelled all of my accounts.

    I started mmo gaming to hide from a failing marriage, after marriage counseling failed. My wife started getting meaner and meaner, so I started gaming to bury myself in my office and hide from it.

    We recently decided to get a divorce. I dropped all of my accounts, started working out again and I've never been more happy in my life. "Hardcore" gamers are usually either escaping from something, or addicted to gaming. Neither situation is conducive to happiness. I'd guess that the ones who are escaping from something are more often also abusing(caffiene, pot, beer, whatever).

    I don't think gaming directly causes the unhappiness, it's caused by the circumstances surrounding the gaming. I started gaming *because* I was unhappy. Obsessive compulsive gamers tend to lose their jobs and families because of the gaming. My marriage was already on life support so it was sort of reversed.

    Casual gaming is also pretty prevalent and that's perfectly healthy. I'd bet that they'd get much different results interviewing casual gamers.

    I quit because now I have better stuff to do and the source of my pain is gone. I'm also looking better because I cook my own food out of fresh ingredients ;). I feel really bad for addicted people. They have to hit rock bottom to quit. I never had to do that. Well actually, it's probably more accurate to say I hit rock bottom before I started gaming.

    -Viz

    • by kv9 (697238) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @10:25AM (#25054619) Homepage

      started mmo gaming to hide from a failing marriage, after marriage counseling failed. [snip] We recently decided to get a divorce. I dropped all of my accounts, started working out again and I've never been more happy in my life.

      I fucking hate people like you. you just fuck up online games with your lack of commitment. why don't you just hit the bottle like a normal person would do. or drugs. something. you know, some of us do actually enjoy gaming and don't use it as a filler for a void fucking life.

      you failed at marriage. you failed at gaming. good luck "working out". hope that works out for you.

      *groan*

    • Man, ex-gamers are worse than ex-smokers with the smug patronizing, aren't they!

    • by King_TJ (85913)

      I absolutely agree with one of your statements, at least. "I don't think gaming directly causes the unhappiness. It's caused by the circumstances surrounding the gaming."

      Gaming is, at the core, an escape mechanism. ALL of us feel the need to escape our daily lives now and then. That's why we enjoy things like watching movies. For a couple hours, we're focused on fictional characters and what's happening in THEIR lives, instead of our own. The problem is, when your life becomes something you dread retu

  • bullshit (Score:2, Insightful)

    by DragonTHC (208439)

    because we all know how well players of MMORPG games, especially eq2, represent themselves as truthfully as possible.

    they're all lying about their fitness. They're playing these sort of games because they're unhappy about their body image. So they create a new one in-game.

    The study is bullshit, it is completely worthless. The researchers might have thought about that before investing the time and money.

    This is like studying how many monkeys would fling poo if given the chance.

    • by DragonTHC (208439)

      on second thought, the study might be accurate since, eq2 players rarely eat anything other than crystal meth sandwiches.

  • by lupine_stalker (1000459) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @10:15AM (#25054451)
    I resent the implication that we gamers suffer from problems with depression. I mean, with the amount of Ecstasy I've downed over the past 24 hours I should be well past carefree until Sunday, at least!
  • by Guysmiley777 (880063) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @10:31AM (#25054731)
    Because if not, every male you speak to in an MMO is either 6'2", well muscled, former special forces soldier who is proficient in at least two forms of martial arts.

    Unless they're pretending to be a girl for all the attention and free loot.
  • Many gamers are socially inept...
    Gamers want GF/BF so they keep themselves trim...
    Gamers dont get GF/BF so they get depressed/abuse substances.

    QED

    James (A Single Gamer)

  • EQII (Score:2, Funny)

    by Tykho (1133421)
    I'd be depressed if all I played was Everquest too.
  • we play games whose goal is to not make you feel satisified when you occomplish a large goal. There is no end.

    I would love to see an MMORPG that has an end.

  • The downside, however, was the gamers reported more cases of depression and substance abuse than their compatriots.

    This is meaningless. However if they'd differentiated between substance use and substance abuse it would have been quite an interesting comparison.

  • I agree (Score:3, Insightful)

    by koan (80826) on Thursday September 18, 2008 @11:13AM (#25055429)

    I am fitter than most of my co workers and I game quite a bit, FPS only these days as RPG's are to addictive.
      I can see why there would be more depression and substance abuse, after all they don't call it "Evercrack" for nothing, and video games are just another escape like drugs or alcohol for some people.

    I think it stems from lack of control / feelings of powerlessness in real life and when they game (especially RPG'S) there is a feeling of control and power, escapism at its finest.

    In either case I chose to only play quake style FPS (TF2, Quakewars, ETC) instead of RPG's, because in an RPG I wind up putting more effort into the game than I do my own "real life".
    FPS I just shoot characters for a few hours and I am done no character to worry about.

  • by billcopc (196330) <vrillco@yahoo.com> on Thursday September 18, 2008 @12:39PM (#25056881) Homepage

    While everyone else is lying about their health, I'm going to be brutally honest:

    1. I'm 300lbs
    2. I imbibe a gallon or two of beer/liquor each week
    3. Cocaine's a hell of a drug
    4. Nethack, baby!

    All that to say: there is absolutely no unique correlation between gaming habits and fitness. You could have any hobby/pastime in the world, if you overdo it, it can be bad for your health. If you knit 23 hours a day, you're (hopefully) gonne die. If you run marathons 23 hours a day, you're definitely gonna die.

    Hell, if you jerk off 23 hours a day, you're gonna die (and be featured on CSI:Miami).

    Someone needs to lay the fuck off of gamers. Just because a bunch of nutso kids in Columbine liked to play Doom, doesn't mean gamers should be treated as odd little lab rats.

If at first you don't succeed, you must be a programmer.

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