Every once in a while, gaming sites (and not only) all around the world report stories according to which someone harmed someone else because of video games. It always happens, that's a fact. Generally, us games editors are skeptical about them being so games-related, but this one folks... Apparently, a 13-year-old Vietnamese boy has strangled and killed an 81-year-old woman to rob her of cash so he could play online games.
However, digging ... well digg.com, I've come across this story more than once. It also makes reference to World of Warcraft and it seems that this is the game in question here, yet the lengthier, more detailed piece up on earthtimes.org makes no such mention.
Anyway, here's what the latter posts: "Hanoi - Police in Vietnam have arrested a 13-year-old boy accused of murdering and robbing an 81-year-old woman for money to play online games, a police official said Tuesday. Dinh The Dan was arrested on Sunday at his home in Nam Dinh province, 80 kilometers south of Hanoi, according to local policeman Nguyen Duy Duong.
Police say Dan strangled Mai Thi Mau, 81, with a piece of rope and took 100,000 dong (6.2 dollars) from her before burying her in a pile of sand in front of his house on November 10."
Nguyen Duy Duong said: "Dan confessed that he needed money to play online games and decided to kill and rob the woman. He is too young to be put in prison for the crime he committed, but we will send him to a reeducation camp, which may release him after he shows enough good behavior."
Honestly now, the boy is too young to go be put in prison, yet he is mature enough mentally to premeditate a murder, a mugging and the concealing of evidence, all this without remorse? Needless to say, there are two influencing factors here: one is that the child was clearly a troubled individual, while the second, which anyone can guess, is the addiction to MMO games. It has been proven numerous times before that titles such as WoW and Counter Strike (not a MMO) can cause serious addiction, more so if the individual has a tendency towards these kinds of actions.
So, while online games themselves are not to blame for sad events such as this one, throwing more MMOs in the wild will indeed only increase the rate of bad behavior among addicted teens.