Subject of Video Game Addiction Inspires School Play

While the topic of videogame addiction has spawned books, studies, round-table discussions and even treatment centers, up until now, it’s never been the subject of a school play.

Students from the School of Performing Arts at the Middlesex County Vocational and Technical School in East Brunswick, New Jersey are preparing to unveil just such a production. Entitled Neighborhood 3: Requisition of Doom, or N3RD for short, the play centers around a group of kids who become addicted to a fictional horror videogame (Neighborhood 3).

The Sentinel reports that the play, written by Jennifer Haley, “explores video game addiction and the importance of teenparent communication by revealing the thin line between reality and virtual reality, and dramatizing the consequences of games gone too far.”

Each performance will be followed by a discussion with Dr. Tom Massarelli, a school district psychologist. This Saturdays performance will also offer a debate, presumably on the subject of videogame addiction, between Massarelli and Dr. David Rothenberg, a professor from New Jersey Science & Technology University ( NJIT).

The play runs April 15-17 and is not recommended for children under 14 years of age.

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14 comments

  1. sharpshooterbabe says:

    The play runs April 15-17 and is not recommended for children under 14 years of age.

    Appearantly the school district psychologist is stupid to NOT let kids under 14 watch the play?!?!? If she thinks she knows what she is talking about, she doesn’t b/c of NOT letting 14 yrs or younger watch it. If she knew what she was talking about, since again she doesn’t then she would let all ages watch & NOT let children under 7 watch the play.

    She is a school district psychologist that has no clue what she is talking about gearing towards games. She should stick to what she knows, psychology & NOT psychology of games & what can happen to teens & kids at young ages that play games.

     

    "It’s better to be hated for who you are, then be loved for who you are not." – Montgomery Gentry

  2. the8bitfox says:

    Personaly i just think this play is going to end up Gibbing on gamers. so nothank you i don’t wish to watch that play.

  3. Father Time says:

    "revealing the thin line between reality and virtual reality,"

    Unless they mean something like Second Life or buying virtual items from an MMO I’m not sure what thin line they’re talking about.

    —————————————————-

    Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it’s over they have the same positions they started in.

  4. Cerabret100 says:

    The hope would be they’re so outlandish hat it comes of as satarical of the subject and maybe makes people step back and think their preconcived notions of what game addicts are really like might be a little unrealistic.

    But i kind of doubt it if they’re bringing in a psychologist whom i assume will go on warning of the "proven" dangers of game addiction.

    Not saying addiction doesn’t happen, just people have some seriously screwed up notions about what constitutes addiction and it’s effects.

  5. Arell says:

    While I admit that there is such a thing as video game "addiction" (regardless of what you want to call it, just people playing too long at the detriment of their lives), I don’t buy into the idea that these people blur the lines between reality and virtual reality.  I get the impression from the article, that the addicted gamers in the play probably go nuts, and there are dire "consequences".  Consequences as defined by the typical fears of non-gamers, that games make gamers into psychotic murderers that shoot up schools.

    In other words, the play sounds like crap.

  6. Father Time says:

    No way man, winners don’t do drugs, that’s what the games tell me and damnit I’m going to listen to them.

    If I want to score I’ll just play Heroin Hero or Second Life.

    —————————————————-

    Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it’s over they have the same positions they started in.

  7. Chris Kimberley says:

    The only way things get explored through fiction is by sensationalizing them.  Otherwise it’s boring to watch, just like real life can be.  That’s why we enjoy fiction.

    Personally I think that sensationalizing things is a great way to explore them.  It lets us take something to an absolute extreme, expose all its issues (positive and negative).  Should it be taken as a scientific study into the topic?  Of course not.  But if it gets people to talk about it then we have a chance to speak to our side.  The debate following the one performance will hopefully be a good example of this.

    ===============

    Chris Kimberley

  8. Neeneko says:

    While fiction can be a good way to ‘explore’ issues, I am not sure that made up sensationalist versions of things have a positive effect on the discussion.

    I have a feeling this will be about as ‘useful’ as ‘Mazes and Monsters’.

  9. Rodrigo Ybáñez García says:

    by revealing the thin line between reality and virtual reality…

    I wonder if this people believe that The Matrix is real… they are fucking clueless.

     

    ———————————————————— My DeviantArt Page (aka DeviantCensorship): http://www.darkknightstrikes.deviantart.com

  10. Flamespeak says:

    I am so happy the topic of video game addiction is getting the attention it so rightly deserves. I was once an addict. I used to perfom the most vile sexual acts just so I could get some more batteries for my GBA. The dark alleys and the grimy Johns using me for vial acts were agonizing, but it was the easiest way to get monthly access cards to WoW.

    Maybe people will see this play and never use the gateway games of farmville and solitare and lead clean lives devoid of these sould crushing digital devils.

     

    (end satire)

  11. E. Zachary Knight says:

    explores video game addiction and the importance of teenparent communication by revealing the thin line between reality and virtual reality, and dramatizing the consequences of games gone too far

    I still find it funny that the only people who really know where that line is are the people who actually play games.

    It really is a shame that to some adults, the act of using ones imagination or enjoying entertainment is seen as a negative thing.

    E. Zachary Knight
    Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
    http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma


    E. Zachary Knight
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