33-Year old woman from Swanley, Kent (UK) was so obsessed with the game, Small World, that she played it almost non-stop on the Internet for months while her children were reduced to eating cold baked beans straight from the tin with their fingers and her two dogs, a German shepherd and a lurcher, died of starvation.
Her children aged 9, 10 and 13 were badly neglected for six months. The house was all a mess with bodies of the dogs lying in the dining room and mess all over the floors.
She was sent the link to the game by a friend on Facebook. The game featuring wizards, dwarves, orcs and giants, started as a normal game but became an obsession soon.
The woman tried to block officers from entering the dining room and when asked why she replied: ‘All right, my dogs are in there. They are dead. I killed them. ‘I probably starved them, probably because I have been playing the computer game all the time.’
‘She started playing initially for an hour aday in late 2009 but since August of that year it had become an obsession to the point where she was only getting two hours’ sleep a night,’ said the prosecutor.
‘She still managed to feed the children and get them to school but accepted she let everything else go.
‘Afterwards, it became so overwhelming she didn’t know where to start.
‘It got to the stage where she only bought food that didn’t need cooking.
The woman was given a suspended jail sentence of 2 years, 75 hours of unpaid word, banned from keeping animals and banned from using the Internet.
I wonder if there will soon be a medical term for this wonder – getting too real with the virtual world to disregard reality!