Are Online Video Games More Addicting Than Single-Player Ones?


Video games change with each release. We've seen clear improvements in graphics, sound, and game play with every step forward. But do they really feel any different? Intuitively speaking yes, but what is the science behind it? In this article, experts examine how addiction can lead to other forms of addiction - one example being "game addiction."


In recent years, the prevalence of online gaming has increased due to its accessibility and its ability to be enjoyed from anywhere in the world. However, some people might be unaware that single-player video games can also be addictive. This is because single-player video games provide a sense of gratification that is difficult to find in other forms of entertainment.

Due to this sense of satisfaction, some people become addicted to single-player video games. This addiction can be very hard to break, especially if someone relies on the game for socializing or relaxation. In fact, some people spend more time playing single-player video games than they do spending time with friends or family. Consequently, it is important for people who are addicted to single-player video games to seek help before it becomes too difficult to break the addiction.

Effects of Video Games on the Brain

Much like technology in general, video games have been evolving over the years. Contemporary video games are not just limited to consoles or handheld devices anymore. They can also be played on computers and even smart TVs. However, despite their growing popularity and expanding accessibility, no one really knows for sure how video games affect the brain. 

Some people believe that playing video games habituates the player to stimuli and leads to an increased susceptibility to addiction. This idea is based on the so-called “mere exposure” hypothesis which states that repeated exposure to a stimulus (in this case, video games) will lead to a decrease in the occurrence of viscous avoidance behaviors (i.e., avoiding things that elicit fear/anxiety in response to novelty). In other words, if you play video games often, you might become less likely to avoid them when they do provoke a feeling of anxiety or fear, thus increasing your chances of developing an addiction. 

Other Gaming Platforms

According to a study conducted by University of Toronto researchers, online video games may be more addictive than single-player ones. The study consisted of testing the response time and memory of participants who were playing either an online game or a single-player campaign on a computer. The results indicated that the participants who were playing online games had slower response times and had difficulty remembering key details after they stopped playing. This suggests that online games may be more addictive than single-player ones because they require more focus and engagement from the player.

While this study is preliminary, it provides some interesting insight into the debate over whether or not gaming is addictive. Perhaps future research will shed light on whether or not this is actually the case, but for now, it seems safe to say that online gaming can be quite addicting.


While there is no definitive answer to this question, many experts believe that online video games are more addicting than their single-player counterparts. Researchers have found that dopamine levels in the brains of gamers playing multiplayer games are much higher than those who play solo games. This might be because gaming communities offer a sense of social connectivity and affirmation that can be highly addictive. If you are struggling to break free from your addiction to online video games, it might be worth considering joining a gaming community that suits your preferences better. Alternatively, you could try enrolling in counseling or therapy which could help guide you through the pandora’s box of gaming addiction.

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