This Is Your Brain On Farmville

“I justify this as being my only source of entertainment, and I’m forgoing movies and dinners out, so it’s OK,” one Farmville addict told Cnet. Frugality, or self-deluded rationalization?

The same person said they were a hardcore Mafia Wars player before “I realized I hated it,” she said. “It wasn’t cute. It wasn’t even fun–just addicted clicking.” But when it’s a cartoon farm, mixing cute pixels with notions of worthy toil, then it’s all good.

Are you or someone you know addicted to social gaming? Share your experience in the comments.

Virtual farm games absorb real money, real lives [Cnet]

Comments

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  1. yessongs says:

    Gt lf!

    • catskyfire says:

      You mean like one where you read articles on Consumerist and then add an unhelpful comment?

      • summerbee says:

        No, he means the kind where you read comments on Consumerist and then add snarky replies.

        Oh. Wait.

      • TouchMyMonkey says:

        Hardly unhelpful. I’ll even second it before the original gets disemvoweled. GET. A. LIFE. Seriously. These games are designed to require daily participation. I played Cafe World for awhile until I realized (a week or so later) that if I was ever to get anywhere, I’d have to log on every day. The game is like Tamagotchi – it doesn’t quit just because you’ve logged off and gone to bed. Thus, like a real farm, it requires daily attention. Me, I’d rather give daily attention to my real garden, which is choked with real weeds, and occasionally gives me more real tomatoes than I can eat. I get a tan, some exercise, some fresh air, and something to brag about at work. Just tell your boss about how much time you spend on your Farmville farm. I dare you.

        • Rectilinear Propagation says:

          It’s completely unhelpful. You’re saying “Stop engaging in activities that I don’t personally approve of.”

          Is there any reason at all that someone who doesn’t know you from a hole in the ground should do that?

          I get a tan, some exercise, some fresh air, and something to brag about at work.

          How many of them tell you to get a life?

        • trey says:

          you seem like the type that was picked on in school.

        • Southern says:

          Monkey, please feel free to read and reply to my post on page 2. Please also feel free to post a list of all YOUR hobbies and what YOU spend money on every month so that people that don’t agree with what you spend YOUR money on can make fun of you.

  2. summerbee says:

    I don’t get it. I’ve never played Farmville, but when I watch others play it, it just looks like a lot of…well, work.

    • Blueberry Scone says:

      I know, right? I am saying this as someone who plays WoW – Farmville is work. You have to trade things, keep harvesting stuff every day, etc. My husband quit his Farmville addiction when he realized he could put the same amount of effort into growing an actual garden.

      • zandar says:

        i’m suprised i haven’t heard of more people actually doing that- but there is NO resemblance whatsoever between real gardening and click, click, click. gardening involves real sweat, real heat and rain and mud, real back and knee pains.

        Although if you can get around those drawbacks, you can raise some sweet corn. As in, it tastes sweet. Better than any Farmville corn.

        • Blueberry Scone says:

          I probably should have just said “time.” He realized he was putting a few hours into Farmville a day. You could better use that time to turn the soil, weed the garden, prune, etc. – AND get fresh tomatoes and beans that you can actually eat!

    • mikeP says:

      I cleverly recorded a script to do all my farmville work for me! My wife them just informed me that I had successfully managed to find a way to play a 10 year old kid game without actually playing it.

      After the challenge of scripting it was done, there was really no further motivation to play the game. After all, ‘playing’ it is really and truly mind-numbing and pointless. I am truly amazed that people play it for more than a week. And what really blows my mind is that people BUY farmville stuff for real money!

  3. pantheonoutcast says:

    Both my mom and my sister have two Facebook accounts each so they can send Farmville items to each other all day long. I’m recovering from two surgeries – I have an excuse to be inside. They have missed the entire summer playing with digital hay bales or whatever.

    Meanwhile, my mom let her real vegetable garden, including the tomato plants I bought her for Mother’s Day, wither and die in the summer heat. It’s sad.

  4. TuxthePenguin says:

    10 am to midnight every day? Ignoring the money she actually spends on the game..

    If she actually worked at a minimum wage job (lets just say $8 for easy math) for that amount of time (14 hours a day), that’s $112 per day. Heck, lets just say 8 hours a day, 7 days a week, no vacations. That’s nearly $24k. At five days a week that’s over $15k.

    Yeah, there are hidden costs…

  5. syzygy says:

    Not my cup of tea, but hey, whatever floats your boat. Or…tills your fields? Just don’t keep bothering me about it. Farmville chatter is about as tolerable to me as Christian proselytizing.

  6. caradrake says:

    I don’t play any Facebook-related games, such as Farmville or Mafia Wars, but I do play on a social sort of game called Dragon Cave… it’s free and you get to look at cute little dragon pictures.

    Honestly, I see nothing wrong with people spending money on Farmville, or WoW, or any other sort of entertainment. So long as it’s fun, and it’s not breaking their personal budget, who cares how someone spends their time? And so long as it’s not hurting anyone, I guess.

    • TuxthePenguin says:

      I normally agree with you (live and let live) but with 14 hours a day… that’s addiction. That’s not healthy.

  7. blogger X says:

    I make my own farms at home.

  8. pecan 3.14159265 says:

    It kind of depends on who you’re playing with – I play Words with Friends with strangers and my actual friends and Mr. Pi so it’s different if I’m playing with a real friend because we can talk about our words over lunch or email and the game becomes a conversation topic.

  9. catskyfire says:

    I’ve been hooked on various Facebook games periodically. And I still play a couple of the Zynga ones, though not as rabidly as I once did.

    The thing is, they are perfectly designed for their purpose. When you start, you get quick rewards, and that feeds the interest. Later, it takes more and more time, but…dang it…my crops will die! You’ve invested time and energy into it. And then you think, “I need more fuel to do this faster…” so you drop real world money for it.

    When you start, it’s really only a few minutes. No more than the time it takes to read a Consumerist article, or follow an online comic. And there is an aspect of fun to it. How many people play games that are essentially point and click? Even things like World of Warcraft feed on some of the same concepts…

    • raydee wandered off on a tangent and got lost says:

      More and more games are built with the intent of drawing people in to get money from them, to be enormous time-sinks. And it is frustrating. I joined a site, I loved it at first but after a while I came to hate it. But I felt that I could not leave, because I had put so much time and effort into being a member of the site.

      A lot of games are skipping the membership fee in exchange for a “convenient advantage” fee. You can spend hours collecting materials, or you can just buy them. You can spend hours grinding, or you can buy an XP multiplier. They offer all sorts of shortcuts, and then the decision is, “do I want this free and difficult, or easy and expensive?”

      Frustrating.

      • catskyfire says:

        I agree. You get ‘free’ for a cost of more time. It is still a brilliant marketing plan. Suck them in a little, then they are invested, in terms of time or emotions, and are less likely to leave.

        Of course, realistically, we also have to remember that no company creates games just to be nice. Outside of a few people creating something for themselves, and releasing it, anything company made is with the intent of profit. Servers cost money, programmers want to be paid, and the rule of business it to make more money than it costs. We may condemn the companies that come up with these methods that hook us and suck out our money, but it is business.

        • Conformist138 says:

          Haha. OK, i find this funny. so, video games were INVENTED to rip us off- that was the entire point behind the first arcade games. Try playing the original versions of Super Mario Bros or Donkey Kong- let’s just say you can SEE where the coding is trying to ensure your quick demise. The idea was to make people pump in quarter after quarter.

          This isn’t new, it’s literally a continuation of the exact same thing. But we’re so *surprised*!

  10. NarcolepticGirl says:

    I have several friends that play WOW and all those other games.
    It’s hard to get them out of the house to see them.
    I also know many who have been dumped because of out of control the addictions became. Including an ex of mine.

    Not sure if anyone plays farmville or FB games, as I have those application notifications blocked.

    • DJ Nihil says:

      Egad. I know what you mean. I got at least 1 or 2 requests a week from friends wanting to give me items for those games.

      And my news feed was getting so clogged up with people’s accomplishments, so I started using the feed filter addon for firefox and I don’t have to worry anymore.

      I could’ve also just removed those people from said friends list, but we actually socialize on FB, so FF is the next best thing. Gets rid of all the ads and banners that Ad Block Plus can’t too.

      • Cleo256 says:

        You can also just block Farmville using Facebook’s tools. I blocked Mafia Wars once and never heard from it again.

  11. chaesar says:

    I can’t talk, I used to play Diablo 2….alot

    • YoorCriptonite says:

      Diablo 3 coming soon(ish)

      Beware.

    • Platypi {Redacted} says:

      Me too. Amazing how free I felt when I completely walked away from it. Just gave away all the crap, gave a friend my passwords/accounts, and checked out of battle.net altogether. My boys will occasionally have me play with them (TCP/IP), but that is just a character here and there, and no where near the obsessive behavior that you get online.

    • Warble says:

      u got soj

      Seriously though, if you want a low risk (i.e., single player only) Diablo 2 clone that’s a ton of fun, I recommend Torchlight. It gets like 90% of the fun of the original, but without any of the time sink qualities.

      • Toffeemama is looking for a few good Otters says:

        Torchlight is fun for a while(worth the money), but it just doesn’t have the same replay value that Diablo 2 has. Once I beat Torchlight, I had absolutely no desire to go back and replay the dungeons again. Of course, that could be partially because I cheap-assed my way through it as a summoner, but still…

  12. Dallas_shopper says:

    I play Farmville and make no apologies for it. I don’t spend hours on it every day. It’s simply a way to pass the time. some people crochet.

    • Dallas_shopper says:

      I should add that I never spend real money on any of these things.

    • ellemdee says:

      Same here. After a long day at work, I find it relaxing to play Farmville for a bit in the evening while dinner cooks. Everyone has their own way to unwind. I don’t spend real money on it, either.

      I actually saw someone complain on a forum that they spent $1000 to finish Mafia Wars in a week and they were bored now. Unbelieveable.

    • Cleo256 says:

      Totally agreed. If anything, Farmville’s even more casual than knitting. I can spend 5-10 minutes at a time planting crops, then come back later to spend 5-10 minutes more. I can also define how often I play. If I plant multi-day crops, I can safely neglect my farm for a week and not lose anything.

      I’ve also never spent any real money on it (although I wouldn’t be ashamed to toss it a couple bucks). I neither understand the “looks like work” viewpoint nor the “I play 14 hours a day and spent thousands of dollars” viewpoint. The game’s mildly fun in short bursts, is all.

      • Dallas_shopper says:

        Exactly. Most days I only play Farmville while I’m sipping my morning coffee and listening to the news. Just something mindless to do while I shake the cobwebs out of my stress-addled brain.

        And I think it’s really sad that people spend actual money on those games. They can be extremely addictive.

        • kennedar says:

          When I was unemployed, I enjoyed Farmville as a way to pass the time while I was putting in resumes and everything. I am a big believer in the idea that if you are unemployed, your job is to find a new job, so I spent 8+ hours on my computer filling in applications and such. When I needed a brain break, Farmville was a good distraction. Now that I am working though, I have totally lost interest!

  13. tresser says:

    i played Mafia Wars pretty religiously. Then i got laid up at home for a week after surgery from having a kidney stone taken care of, and during that entire week, i didn’t once feel the urge to play. I had an urge to pee, bu that was about it.

    since then i’ve never had an inkling to play again,.

    Bejeweled Blitz, on the other hand……

    • zaku2s274 says:

      Hack your highest score. It is always great fun to have your friends ask how you got a score of 13371337, or the possible maximum, 1,000,000,000.

    • rbb says:

      As a fellow sufferer of kidney stones, I have nothing but good to say for dilaudid in the IV stream ;^)

  14. Warble says:

    “Stop playing Farmville and finish eating your breakfast!” — My best friend, to her mom, who has created at least eight fake Facebook accounts to serve as serfs in her Farmville fiefdom

  15. Doug81 says:

    I played farmville some but I soon got tired of it because I realized something. I kept planting crops to make more money so that I could plant more crops etc. I like games with the general exception of games that do not end.

    I like being entertained as much as anyone but games can be a big time sink; if there’s no end it can become a problem once you’re into it.

    • JonStewartMill says:

      Someone made the comment about online RPGs that they’re like “a treadmill that makes you fatter.” That pretty much nails it.

  16. B says:

    I play a couple social games on Facebook, and they can be quite addictive. However, comparing the hour or so a day I play on them to the 3-4 hours every night playing starcraft 2, I think I can safely say that other video games are much more addictive.

  17. A Pimp Named DaveR says:

    So people with addictive personalities can become addicted to things that can be addictive.

    Whaddya know.

  18. Cantras says:

    I use that excuse for WoW, but WoW costs me $15 a month, or less. The person quoted spends $100/month.
    On one hand, it’s still pixels, and I’ve played enough WoW that my brain is doing weird things lately after a week of not playing, so I can’t really talk about addiction — On the other hand, ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS A MONTH? For something where they’re explicitly selling you out to advertisers? they should almost be paying you.

    Tangentially on topic:
    I’ve been playing this free text game called improbable island, and you can pay for silly things or for a little extra currency, so I can’t automatically paint it with a different brush from stuff like Farmville.
    … but they encouraged their users to download the BOINC screensaver — one of those curing-cancer screensavers. and on the front page of the wiki, they’ve posted a message. It starts with a quote from the farmville guy about wanting money and getting people to download adware toolbars and stuff, and follows up with the info that Improbable island players have done a collective 150 years of research. (also the line “Suck it, Farmville, we’re curing cancer.”) No real in-game reward for the screensaver. We get “cobblestones” which may or may not be useful in the future.
    So yeah. There’s no facebook app of Improbable island, he’s in it for fun, not profit. Thought I’d give it a shout because it’s not evil. And also you probably couldn’t play it 8 hours straight because of the “stamina” system, so no consumerist articles about it absorbing your whole life. ;)

    ( Since I’m blathering about it, it’s http://www.improbableisland.com/home.php?r=Cantras . Last bit’s obviously my referrer tag, removable if you’d prefer.)

    • lim says:

      To anyone who starts playing I.I.-Do NOT hit the diplomat’s pocket protector. It does it’s job.

      I played for a while (loved the humor) but I forced myself to stop as soon as I realized that I was thinking “Only one more hour until the new day starts!” The less variety in the graphics the less I am conscious of time passing so even with the stamina system I was getting pathetic.

      Oh, and I left a sled up near 404. It’s yours if you want it and no one’s taken it ;)

  19. Martha Chang says:

    Man, if you’re going to get addicted to a game, get addicted to a real game.

    Like Quake.

    • pantheonoutcast says:

      Does your time machine use plutonium, or rely on a fusion reaction from household refuse?

  20. smo0 says:

    Hi, I’m Smo0 and I’m a World of Warcraft addict.

    … and even I don’t undertand farmville…..

  21. Lollerface says:

    Time you enjoy wasting was not wasted – John Lennon

  22. RayanneGraff says:

    I’ve never been able to understand why people love Facebook games so much. I tried playing Farmville about a year ago & I think I lasted maybe 15 minutes before I got bored & logged off. Can NOT figure out how people get hooked on these games. True, I’m not much of a gamer, the only games I’ve ever really been able to get into are Tetris, Zelda, Shadowgate, all the Marios, and the Metroid Primes, but still. All you do in the FB games is click on stuff! WTF.

    I have this one friend who literally spends all day playing EVERY game Facebook has to offer. I kid you not, she has accounts in every single game on FB. every day I have to hide 2-3 new game statuses from her. It’s getting to the point where I’m thinking about deleting her even though she’s a real-life friend. All the goddamn game requests & suggestions & statuses are starting to drive me crazy. I don’t think she’s ever posted an actual STATUS status, it’s all “Come water my crops!” or “I found you a pet!” followed by links to the games. I don’t know how the hell she manages to take care of her son, he’s probably a lonely little boy.

    • Dutchess says:

      you know you can hide just the farmville (mafia wars etc) game status updates.

      When you see one of the updates next time, hit hide and then select Hide Farmville and all farmville updates are hidden.

      Super lame either way.

      There’s even a group out there called “If I get one more Farmville request I will burn your crops and kill your animals” LOL

    • zandar says:

      the thing that bugs me is, once mafia wars took off, the chit chat i shared with friends over fb devolved into constant nags to join them doing this thing or that thing in mafia wars and now in farmville. I know I can hide all that junk, but it depressed me that our interaction had devolved into that. I post mostly personal stuff and get occasional replies from these people, but as far as I can tell a good third of my fb friends no longer do anything on there but play these games, and the interaction, limited as it was, is now pretty much gone.

      So I don’t bother even looking anymore. There are so many better things to do with my life, and I’m out there doing them while these folks are tending their virtual gardens that will never yield anything corporeal. Pity.

  23. Rectilinear Propagation says:

    I don’t play social games but I like online games. Many of those games are completely pointless, like the Achievement Unlocked games:
    http://armorgames.com/play/2893/achievement-unlocked
    http://armorgames.com/play/6561/achievement-unlocked-2

    Straight up meta-gaming, even the game tells you that you haven’t really accomplished anything.

  24. Tarceinus says:

    Wow. It really doesn’t take that much more effort to plant an actual garden; far less upkeep too. Plus you get delicious, delicious veggies instead of the homogenized grocery store stuff.

  25. JulesNoctambule says:

    I have a friend who has a real farm, and even she plays Farmville sometimes! She says the complete lack of any actual resemblance to farming amuses her.

  26. SanDiegoDude says:

    Eh, I play Farmville, so does the missus. It can actually be relaxing after a stressful day to go on and fart around on your virtual field, arrange your animals and stuff. I even ended up with 150 “farmville cash” after I signed up for Gamefly (although I didn’t do it for the Farmville cash, I’d seen their commercials and had a vague interest in it anyway, so when i saw the ad link I did the clickthrough). That being said, I would never dump a penny into the game beyond a few minutes of leisure time here or there.

  27. Bativac says:

    I have been playing Lego Batman on the Nintendo Wii for about 45 minutes to an hour a day for the past couple weeks. I can feel myself slipping into it, so I guess I can see how somebody can become addicted to these games. I sympathize. It’s hard to stop, sometimes.

    A couple summers ago, I spent hours a day trying to beat (this is the first time I have ever admitted this) Super Punch-Out!! on the Super Nintendo. I became a hardcore addict until I beat it and then I never touched it again.

    I have never played Farmville and am not entirely sure what it is or how you play.

  28. frankieman70 says:

    fail farm

  29. arielariel says:

    I like these games for release in between shows (I am a performer/actor) — after lots of work, it’s nice to sit back and click for a few days. And then, it gets boring, and I’d rather do more interesting things.

    In one of those lulls, I started playing Farmville, and then went to a farmer’s market in the middle of Pennsylvania — and, watching the livestock auction and the farm people hanging out, I have to say I got kind of bored of my fakey-snakey, no risk, click-to-succeed fake farming. Maybe if there was strategy aside from “wait and bother your friends” I would remain more interested.

  30. smarmyjones goes cattywampus says:

    I have a Farmville, and a Farmtown but I’m considering just letting them get deleted. Farmville was fun until I finally got my stable finished and all my damn horses disappeared. Game Glitch my ass.

    I usually play games on Pogo.com the most now.

    My Hubby, on the other hand is finally being weaned off WoW. It used to be crazy. He would be on it every day for HOURS and had 3-4 nights a week that were dedicated to raiding. He hated most of the people in his guild but felt a responsibility to them even though noone there even gave a damn about him. It took a LOT of convincing on my part, but he finally left the guild and now just checks the auction house once a week. We’ve been together seven years and we’ve probably missed out on about 2 of them because of this damn game.

  31. Southern says:

    Look, everybody needs a hobby. And most of them cost at least SOME money.

    Some people like to do photography as a hobby. That can be a VERY expensive hobby.
    Some people like to do RC as a hobby. Again, that can be a VERY expensive hobby.
    Fishing – can be cheap OR expensive, depending on how you do it.. Equipment, boats, etc. You can fish for free in streams for instance, or you can spend 10′s of thousands on a boat..
    Coin Collecting – Can be expensive, but at least (generally) you can sell your coins and recoup some of your hobby cost in the end.
    Stamp Collecting – Same as Coin Collecting.
    Restoring (old) cars – EXTREMELY expensive & time intensive, and while you may make a profit in the end, it usually doesn’t even come close to covering all the hours you put into restoring the vehicle.
    Gun collecting – helpful if you ever decide to overthrow the government, I guess. Not cheap, either.
    Crocheting/knitting – fairly inexpensive, and hey, you can make potholders & sweaters to give away at christmas. ;-)

    Can anyone here say that they don’t know ANYONE that doesn’t have a hobby of some type that doesn’t take a lot of time?

    What exactly does GET.A.LIFE mean, anyway? What do people that say that do for their OWN life? Work 8-10 hours a day, then go hang out with friends, get drunk, go barhopping, go fishin? That’s living? Thanks, but no thanks. For some people, getting drunk (or high) probably IS their hobby. DEFINITELY not a cheap hobby. Is spending $100 or more on alcohol a month any different than someone spending it on something that THEY enjoy, like Farmville?

    Then there’s games.. I know people that spend 12 hours a day playing HALO on 360.. Or Modern Warfare on PS/3. Who am I to tell them that instead of playing a game 12 hours a day, they should take up knitting as a hobby instead?

    “Judge Not, Lest Ye be Judged”.

    • Rectilinear Propagation says:

      Crocheting/knitting – fairly inexpensive,

      Depends an awful lot on the kind of yarn/thread you’re buying and how much. It can lead to a fiber addiction. Many people who knit or crochet love, love, love buying yarn even when we don’t really “need” more.

      But yes, potholders/dishcloths are teh awesomeness. Very portable project for bus rides and doctor’s offices.

    • Outrun1986 says:

      I think that people who don’t have a hobby, don’t have a life. I too don’t see the fun in drinking and going to a bar. Going to a bar is boring because well, there is actually nothing to do there other than sit and drink. Honestly that’s the same as playing farmville, and if you are drinking, you are putting a very bad substance into your body, making it worse than sitting and playing farmville. I don’t play farmville but I actively collect and play video games and I consider that my hobby. You won’t find me playing halo for 12 hours a day but you might find me organizing and cleaning up a large pile of Sega Genesis games..

      If you want to go out with friends and make something of your life, go where there is something to do, go to an amusement park, gokarts, golfing, sports, a county fair etc. Or better yet go talk about or participate in a real hobby I don’t care what it is even if its fishing or crocheting. its still a hobby or a past time no matter what it is.

      Wasting money on online games is really pointless, because someday they will pull the game then everything you put into it is gone, if you are spending money on it that is. I would rather spend my money on real games so that I have something to show for it.

  32. TheGreySpectre says:

    When I have seen people play farmville I have always though it just looked like a lame version of simcity or harvest moon.
    Don’t get me wrong, I play far too many video games, however I also am more then happy to drop what I am doing and go hang out with friends or go to my martial arts class or go hiking or rock climbing.

  33. SofaMonster says:

    I’m in it for the escapism. I’m in a situation that is completely demoralizing at work. I fully assume that once I get a job that I enjoy that I will stop wasting my time with online games.

  34. Saltpork says:

    I’m an actual gamer and website games aren’t for me.
    The closest I get was a two week time period I beat Plants vs Zombies in. I was doing it at work(had the game on a usb stick) and I would play over lunch.

  35. Admiral Obvious says:

    Abomination: “The SAME PERSON said THEY were a hardcore Mafia Wars player…” [Wha? How many personalities does this person have??]

    English: “The same person SELF-IDENTIFIED AS a hardcore Mafia Wars player…”

    See? It’s really not that hard to communicate properly in English.

  36. BrownEyes says:

    Some of them pay to plant pretend crops? I guess it’s no worse than paying for online gaming.

  37. Not Given says:

    If anyone sends me any more Farmville requests I’m gonna burn their crops and kill all their animals

  38. Levk says:

    I played it and still play it. But I play cafe world and really I go at most once a day >> Farmville maybe once a week at most less then that unless i plant something those pop up ads get annoying and I just get annoyed and stop >

  39. I just blue myself says:

    I go through phases of playing Zynga games, my favorite being Cafe World. I can’t imagine myself actually putting any money into it though.

  40. Fafaflunkie Plays His World's Smallest Violin For You says:

    According to sources (the TWiT podcast I listened to today) the 70+million people who log into Farmville play on average 15 minutes/day. Those playing We Rule (much smaller number, about 3 million) play on average 45 minutes. I hate to ask the average time/day people playing World of Warcraft? Fortunately, my addiction is limited to reading a few websites (this being one of them.) Surely not sitting here that long.

    But what I’d like to know is wtf is with myspace running scripts on this particular post? When logged in here using Chrome, I was bounced to some myspace 404 page trying to read this story. Came back with Firefox (with the NoScript extension) and see a blocked site: myspacecdn.com, which kept me from being bounced. Irony of ironies: the URL bar was showing something from facebook.com. Anyone else here experience that?

  41. The Marionette says:

    I played it for about a few weeks then gave up because well……… simcity is a hell lot better (and i’m talking about the first direct-top view one).

  42. alana0j says:

    Yeah..my 23 year old sister who still lives at home stole my parents credit card to buy freakin FarmVille cash. They couldn’t figure out how to prove it was her…even though she was the only one in the house on Facebook…until I hacked her Facebook and showed them. That kind of obsession is ridiculous, it’s a game you never win. There is NO reward for it and it’s not like you buy it once and that’s it, you keep putting money into it for more new stuff. I just can’t understand why people are so into it….

  43. Deans Blinds says:

    My God, they ought to ban Facebook during office hours!

    • lim says:

      My former place of employment being one of them. Even thought the site was blocked people figured out how to play anyhow. (Facebook itself wasn’t blocked since the company had a presence there.)

  44. whatsherface says:

    I am addicted to social gaming… but to real games like L4D, TF2, MW2… THAT’S gaming. I have never touch Farmville or Mafia Wars.. plus I also have a life which takes priority over my hobbies.

  45. CFinWV says:

    No better or worse than spending your evenings doing whatever floats *your* boat.

  46. WHC999 says:

    My wife went from Farmville…with her and her farm…to Mafia wars…whacking narcs for her “family”…and now Frontierville…where she is married and has a son (her own family)…should I be concerned? I’m not sayin’ anything is going on….I’m just sayin’.

  47. cybrczch says:

    So, so SO glad I got over my FarmVille addition last spring – decided that I’d rather spend the time I wasted on it growing *real* plants – my jars of pickles and tomato sauce and my partially filled freezer will testify to that.

  48. Erika'sPowerMinute says:

    Wondering how in the hell people have all this time on their hands, and how anyone can sit for hours in front of a computer. Doesn’t your ass fall asleep? Don’t you feel the need to get up and move around and have a change of scenery and, you know, do stuff? Don’t you have obligations to give time and attention to the real people in your life?

    Ok, whatever, I did skim the rest of the comments and I get that lots of you love gaming in its myriad forms (Farmville, WoW, whatever). People should do what turns their crank, I guess. I just feel somewhat bewildered because I can’t conceive of doing anything that sedentary, that enclosed, for extended periods of time. Yeah, I like to unwind with a couple favorite blogs as much as the next person, but as a break between activities, not as the default activity.

    As for spending real world $$–I imagine that’s like spending on any other hobby. If you can afford it, go to town. If you’re spending the grocery money, you got a problem.

  49. quail says:

    A few months ago WIRED had a great article about the creator of Farmville and other crap apps on Facebook. The guy used a group of behaviorists and sociologists to come up with the reward systems, and they are insidious. They tap into your need for approval and community and work on a basis of randomized rewards. The best ways to create addiction based behaviors in turn creates money spending drones.

  50. Wolfbird says:

    Farmville sucks. I’m sure it’s a cute little game, but all my coworkers were sucked into it and spent all their time feeding their stupid virtual pigs and not working that my office banned outside internet between calls.

  51. wee_willie says:

    I’m seriously considering divorce if my husband does not stop running to the computer/family room and hopping on the computer to play this game as soon as he comes home from work, then not leaving the room until he goes to bed four or five hours later! Can I sue facebook/farmville creators for alienation of affection?