Bizzare Video Games That Killed People In Real Life
Here are some heartbreaking stories to remind us that unlike video games, you can’t just hit “continue” in real life.
Berzerk is one of the earliest known examples of a video game ending in actual death. In April 1982, an 18-year-old named Peter Bukowski landed a couple of high scores on a Berzerk arcade cabinet before collapsing from a heart attack, due to a compromised cardiovascular system which was agitated beyond repair by the game.
An October 1982 article in Video Games Magazine cites studies tying physiological reactions to video game stress that went back as far as 1977, using Pong as a stressor. Those Pong dudes would have instantly exploded playing Bayou Billy.
EverQuest, affectionately called “EverCrack” or “NeverRest” by its many dedicated fans, is an MMORPG known for drawing in easily-addicted gamers, even catalyzing the formation of support groups for people whose relationships suffered from their partner’s addiction to the game.
Shawn Woolley took his EverQuest passion to the extreme in 2002, quitting his job to play full-time. After he ignored a Thanksgiving invitation from his family, his loved ones found Woolley dead in front of his computer from a self-inflicted shotgun wound—with EverQuest still running. Woolley took his own life for unknown reasons, but it’s speculated that it may have been related to a troubled in-game relationship.
Legend of Mir 3
In yet another MMORPG incident with seriously messed-up real-life ramifications, Legend of Mir players Qiu Chengwei and Zhu Caoyuan jointly earned a very rare Dragon Sabre sword in-game, but Zhu decided to sell the sword on eBay in 2005 without Qiu’s consent.
Earning around $870 for the sale, the two players couldn’t come to a reasonable agreement as to proper disbursal of payment for the sword, so Qiu later stabbed Zhu to death in his sleep. Qiu was sentenced to life in prison, but will be eligible for parole in 2020.
Ingress: Walking into traffic
A mobile app that requires you to get up and move around seems like a great idea—until that app sends you directly into traffic, as it did Gabriel Cavalcante Carneiro Leao.
While playing Ingress in 2014, the 16-year-old Brazilian teen lost track of his surroundings while rushing to a “portal” in the game, and was subsequently hit and killed by an oncoming bus. While Ingress has built-in limits to prevent certain unsafe behaviors, like features becoming unavailable while moving at high speeds, there was nothing to stop an absorbed and enthusiastic kid from walking into a busy street. They also didn’t help Frank Maxwell, a 48-year-old father who drowned near a pier in Ireland while playing the game in 2015.
Source – Looper
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