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​Does RuneScape affect willpower?

I played Runescape and was very close to maxing out all the skills. I would say that Runescape negatively affects your willpower. The reason people grind for long hours on Runescape is that people’s brains are psychologically attached to the feeling of advancing their player’s skills, amassing lots of gold, and becoming the top player. What RS3 Gold and other MMORPGs, like WoW, teach us is that when someone’s brain is 100% convinced that doing a certain task can put them ahead of others then that person will do anything to put themselves ahead.


I remember waking up every day to play Runescape because the feeling I got that my life was advancing was very, very addictive. It’s an experience that only those of us who have played MMORPGs can begin to describe. Your brain finds doing the tasks quite effortlessly because of how much your mind is convinced that completing the tasks will have a net benefit on you. Your mind very quickly begins to believe that advancement in the game is the same thing as advancement in real life, especially if you play for many hours a day which is what the top players in the world do. Even trying to max out skill when it first came out before anyone else was challenging for the players who attempted it, but there’s no way their willpower was challenged to any significant degree.

Willpower is gained whenever we choose to do a task in which we can’t see immediate results. If you wrote an essay, and a meter of how your grade was improving as you wrote was displayed on your screen monitor then you would be much more motivated to continue writing for hours on end. After 20 minutes, you’re at a D, 50 minutes and you reach a C+, 2 hours and you’re at a B, and 4 hours later you finally reach an A. The problem is real life isn’t a video game, so we don’t see exp drops as we are doing a task. We need to exert willpower despite the lack of feedback about how much progress we’ve made. MMORPGs can make us play ridiculously long periods because we see how many exp points we’re gaining at all times. Awhile back, Runescape even added an update where the amount of exp you gain can be seen actively on the screen as you’re training a skill. In the past, you would have to click on your stats tab. This made people even more addicted to the game because they can actively see they’re advancement all the time.


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