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District Judge Faked Illness to Play MW2

The UK's Times Online has an interesting feature talking about how consumers spent £4 billion on PC games in 2008--more than the box office and music sales combined. According to a recent study conducted here in the States, the average age of a gamer is 35 and rising: it's this age group which supposedly drives game sales. Statistics say that 40-percent of the British are gamers, whereas 60-percent of those gamers are over 20.

The article points out a few "older" gamers, including one 48-year-old district judge that waited in line at midnight to pick up his copy of Modern Warfare 2. "[It was] like Charlie waiting outside the chocolate factory," he told Times Online. After he purchased his copy, he immediately went home and installed MW2, thus staying up all night and into the morning playing the game. Unable to function, he called in sick, thus the trial scheduled that day had to be postponed.

The article also highlights 37-year-old Jean-Paul Edwards, an executive director of an advertising agency. His passion is racing games, and he's not afraid to admit that he can get addicted quick. “Every month or so I become addicted to a new racing game and play it like crazy for three or four hours a day until I’m defeated by a particularly tough level,” he said. Edwards also added that the process could take up to three weeks of "dedicated gaming."

Naturally, the article moves into the addictive quality of games, especially with the likes of EverQuest and World of Warcraft. A psychologist said that he's only met ten people who were genuinely addicted, however he also knows that families and jobs can be lost by game addiction as well. Still, the "grown-up" gamers what boosts the economy, especially moneybags like the older judge and the ad executive dumping loads of cash into the industry.

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