The Lure of the Online Game

For a lot of people who regularly spend time online looking for things to occupy that time, playing games is a fun way to do that. It may not exactly be considered as a productive way of utilising that time, but for many it is just time that would have otherwise been spent sitting in front of the TV watching mind numbing games shows!

So what attracts people to play any of the proliferation of Internet based games that are currently available? This article looks at what lures people to them and why they have in many cases become even more of a draw than the ubiquitous TV set.

Addictive Properties of Games

addictive online gamesMany games have certain psychologically addictive properties and they don't necessarily have to be computer based either. Many people find themselves addicted to playing traditional games such as chess or backgammon as well as the many types of card games that can be played amongst friends or family members.

So the addictiveness of computer or Internet games is not necessarily anything to do with the fact that they are technology based. So we need to look more closely at the type, strategy base and layout of the more addictive games to discover what makes people want to play them frequently and often for long periods of time when they do.


It may appear so blatantly obvious to you, but striving to win a game is probably the most addictive part of it, especially when the game itself is tough or complex. It seems the harder it is to achieve the win, the more attractive the game is and the more time the player will spend on trying to beat it.

I speak from personal experience here being a big fan of that seemingly mundane single player game, Spider Solitaire! Being computer-based, it is easy to fire up and start playing, but because it can be maddeningly frustrating at times, I tend to spend more time playing it just so that I can satisfy my need to beat even the most difficult of games.

The fact that by successfully completing the game I don't actually win anything of value is neither here nor there. It is more of a personal challenge that must be conquered that keeps me playing. Try telling that to a person who has no interest in the game whatsoever and they'll look at you as if you are mad!

Something of Substance

For many players, one of the main attractions of a game is a prize for winning of some substance, be it a material gift or even money. This is evident by the sheer number of people that are attracted to online betting in USA for all these and probably many more reasons.

There is nothing quite like playing for a monetary prize that in some cases can be quite substantial, as in the case of certain casino based forms of entertainment. While they are certainly not free to enter and can cost a tidy sum when you start getting serious, they provide entertainment along with the excitement of the possibility of winning a lot of money. That's an aspect of certain games that can be very hard to ignore.

Others are attracted by being able to pit their wits against multiple players online and there are many free game tournaments available to be played where the winner gains the respect of their peers, which can be an enormously valuable prize for some. However it works, becoming addicted to online games is something that affects different people differently.

Whether the lure of playing games online or in the more traditional sense is in its monetary or material prize winning potential, or of it is the satisfaction of beating a worthy opponent, or simply the fulfilment of pushing your personal problem solving and intuitive skills to the limit, some games possess an undeniable attractiveness that players cannot resist. As long as the end result is satisfying to the player, the means will always justify the ends and make playing the game a worthwhile use of a person's time.