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#1 of 153 Old 02-26-2012, 07:05 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We enrolled our 11 year old in K12 this year, and they sent us a personal computer( we already had a laptop, but it was not for game playing). Anyway, my 11 and 8 year old sons asked for Minecraft for Christmas. We thought it looked like a cool game and got it for them, with the stipulation that the 8 yo not use the multi-player function and that the 11 yo only chat with neighborhood friends.  

I do see the attraction of the game, and I see the potential for lots of fun and creativity. My concern is that it is becoming addicting. The 11 yo is agreeable enough that if I ask him respectfully to come do such-and-such, he will turn off Minecraft and do it, but he rarely does anything else on his own initiative. He doesn't even go to his neighborhood friends' houses anymore to play. I'll suggest that he go  invite so-and-so over, and he replies that he's already playing with so-and-so on Minecraft.  He hurries through his schoolwork and instrument practice so he can get to playing on the computer.  Now, it is cold outside, and I'm not one of those "Out in any weather" type people. I was born in the South and live in the Midwest now, so to me, winter is indoor season.  The computer goes back in June, at the end of the school year, but I am just not sure how to approach things until then. My husband thinks I should just let him play as long as he is keeping up with school, his music, and his sport. I feel that there is something wrong with being on the computer every time you have a second of free time. 

 

Does anyone else have this problem? How have you handled it?

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#2 of 153 Old 02-26-2012, 09:04 AM
 
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My 11 yr old son plays Minecraft all the time, and our 4 yr old does, too. We have it on our iphones as well as a desktop and laptop. It's not harmful. It's not dangerous. He doesn't do it to the exclusion of anything else. I wouldn't worry about it.

 

(This comes from a family w/ aspergers that is close friends w/ a video game developer. We love Minecraft and I'm, making a minecraft bday cake for my 11 yr old in April.)


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#3 of 153 Old 02-26-2012, 09:29 AM
 
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My son loves Minecraft. We took him to the convention in Las Vegas. He volunteered as staff.

As long as homework is done I am fine with Minecraft.

 

It is great game. I actually hesitate to call it that. He learned a lot and met some amazing friends. My son connected with a programming group at a local university thank to Minecraft and now once a week he goes and listen to lectures on topics such as AI.

 

I would not stop my son from playing Minecraft in the summer. I think it would be really detrimental to his social life.

 

IT also encourage my son to study programming languages. He built his own website. He is developing a game of his won. he also now earn money by offering tech support in the neighborhood.

 

 

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#4 of 153 Old 02-26-2012, 09:55 AM
 
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I read this aloud to my 10 year old minecraft addict and he says your husband is right, LOL!

 

I've been pushing for homework to be done PROPERLY before he gets online, and he has to keep his room decent. The other thing going on in his life thats a big deal to him is that he gets to ride his bike to the school by himself and he can go a few blocks to a friends house or the park, so when I get him off the computer he asks to go out. I generally keep them off the computer until after school time, even on weekends... then at least most of the day is gone. When I call him off at suppertime he usually sticks around and chats with us, and sometimes we decide to do something else.

 

The one thing I realized is if he goes to a friends house, they just get on the computer or gaming system... and then he's on youtube and playing halo and whatever else the other kid is allowed to do! So the letting him go places like the park and meet friends there has sort of fixed that.


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#5 of 153 Old 02-27-2012, 12:28 PM
 
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LOL!  I can't wait to read this post to my 9 yo when he gets home from school.  He'll crack up because we've had the same discussion in our house. All three of my kids play minecraft. (9,9, & 6).  I can see why they like it-- it's all about using their imagination. I think there are some subtle math skills in there, too, especially for my 6 yo.  I limit time if they're not getting music practice, homework or their limit chores done, but they have enough outside activities that I don't mind if they relax by building universes on minecraft. 

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#6 of 153 Old 02-27-2012, 02:31 PM
 
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My 12-year-old  just started renting a server so he could host a world.  They love it here.  We have gone through phases of favorite and "addictive" video games since my kids were about 6 or 7.  We have a 30 minute computer time limit during the week and an hour on Sat and on Sun.  That seems to work for us.

 

I wouldn't be specifically concerned about them being obsessed with it.  That is very normal and won't last forever.  Just find rules you can live with.


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#7 of 153 Old 02-28-2012, 10:45 AM
 
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You mean I'm not alone?  I had no idea Minecraft existed until my DS started public middle school this year.  He quickly made friends with a couple of boys who introduced him to Minecraft and he's been hooked ever since.  He hosted a "playdate" (or whatever you call if when the kids are 12) this Sunday and for 5 hours the three boys sat in the office, each on a different computer, and played Minecraft.  It drove me nuts but they had a great time.  I'm a little worried about the amount of attention it gets too, but I haven't ever really limited screen time in the past so I don't want to start now unless I see some real signs that its causing issues.  I do like that DS hooks into a server run by a school friend and only open by invitation, so I generally know who he's chatting with.  It certainly does give me a handy incentive for getting him to do things.

 

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#8 of 153 Old 02-28-2012, 05:57 PM
 
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ok, explain minecraft to me...


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#9 of 153 Old 02-29-2012, 11:25 AM
 
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http://www.minecraft.net/   From the Minecraft website, Minecraft is a game about placing blocks to build anything you can imagine. At night monsters come out, make sure to build a shelter before that happens.

 

It takes place in a large, chunky landscape. You build things with big cubes.  You can mine (dig) down into the ground with a pick axe, tunnel here and there. Sometimes you come across water or lava.  If you're in Survival mode you need to hunt for food from the pigs that roam around.  I think you get clothing from the sheep.  Like it says above, you have to build yourself a house to keep the zombies away. 

 

12 y.o. son (go figure!) is pretty obsessed, too.  He prefers Creative play, which doesn't have zombies, and doesn't keep score if I understand correctly.  He just goes around building things and blowing them up with dynamite.  Dh built a server for him and he hosts his friends. It's a safe place. 

 

I agree, it's a pretty clever game, and I don't have any problems with the content or concept.  I just don't like how much time ds spends with it.   


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#10 of 153 Old 02-29-2012, 10:14 PM
 
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Oh geeze- do NOT tell ds about minecraft.  Sounds like something he would totally love.  Right now he is still ok with lego designer and pogo LOL.


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#11 of 153 Old 03-01-2012, 01:38 PM
 
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#12 of 153 Old 03-01-2012, 07:49 PM
 
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Haha, my kid loves minecraft, and sometimes I think he doesn't like the game so much as watching endless, endless stupid youtube videos of other people making things in it. I think it's more creative than most video games.



My son does this too!
 

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#13 of 153 Old 03-02-2012, 04:20 PM
 
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My ds is online right now talking and playing Minecraft with two friends. They love it!

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#14 of 153 Old 03-10-2012, 06:50 PM
 
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He is a normal kid living in the 21st century. I really wouldn't worry about it.

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#15 of 153 Old 03-12-2012, 10:35 PM
 
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another mom of an 11 year old minecraft fan here! It's all about balance and moderation. Ours was obsessed for awhile but we started to have agreed upon time limits for computer use and only on weekends or school holidays, or 30 mins if all work was done. We also do an internet sabbath on sundays and encourage creative work with their hands or calling friends. I do think it's a neat game with lots of benefits, just as long as it is balanced with the rest of life.
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#16 of 153 Old 03-21-2012, 04:23 PM
 
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I find that my son binges on any game when it's new.  Eventually the attraction fades, especially once the community pool opens for the summer.  He loves Minecraft but now is fixated on some facebook game that's based on Naruto.  

 

If you're not comfortable with the amount of time gaming, you can set time limits.  It really depends on whatever you as a family are comfortable with.

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#17 of 153 Old 04-08-2012, 05:59 AM
 
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My 8 year old is also addicted to mindcraft.   We have a general rule for all kids that they can only be on the computer for an hour and they have to ask before going on.   They ask, we say yes, they set a timer.  Since the kids "kept forgetting" to set the timer we made a new rule that if we find them on the laptop without a timer they get no more computer the rest of the day. 

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#18 of 153 Old 05-14-2012, 08:10 AM
 
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I had to pull the plug on minecraft and ban it. Dd11 was addicted to it to the point she goes through withdrawals when off it and was having meltdown tantrums when I'd tell her to get off the game. It's pretty bad, she would demand to play from early morning until bedtime, refused to participate in family things, chores, schoolwork ect. She wouldnt even come away to get food and would literally starve unless I brought her food to eat at the computer and then forgot to eat half the time due to being absorbed in the game. She ignored my flat out order not to install minecraft on other computers and put it on all on them and even my phone. She refused to be without the game for even just a few minutes.

When I pulled the plug she started watching others play it on YouTube all day.

The end result? I had to take away the iPad and all computers now have a CMOS boot password and password protected screen savers that kick in in 1 minute. It's a full on addiction problem and it's not healthy. She expects to be entertained every second of every day and while yes the game meets that need limiting her to an hour a day did not work either so I banned it.

Oh yeah, I never PAID for the game yet she had full access, she learned on YouTube how to play for free which I'm pretty sure is illegal. She didn't understand the problem with pirating,

If she could limit her time on the game and remain civil as well as contribute to family life I'd be open to the game but just as with the Roblox game I had to ban it and take even more drastic action to cut her off. She has been in counciling a long time and even the counciler agreed it was time to pull the plug. Minecraft is not good or healthy IMO. Kids need to be active, not staring at a screen. We're about to go screen free again period (were for 3 years) if that's what it takes to get family life back.
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#19 of 153 Old 05-15-2012, 10:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow, Satori!  I can't believe what you've been through!

 

The meltdowns that you mentioned are starting to happen with my 9 yo son. He does not mind doing other things, like playing with friends or doing Legos,  but he has a hard time shutting it off when asked. And while the 11 yo has gotten better, and his interest has waned somewhat, he has been too sedentary and is starting to put on a little weight.  We did make it so that no one can get on the computer at all without my typing in my password, so that has helped. I will be so glad when the K-12 year is over and we send the cursed computer back.

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#20 of 153 Old 05-15-2012, 10:57 AM
 
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Wow, Satori!  I can't believe what you've been through!

 

The meltdowns that you mentioned are starting to happen with my 9 yo son. He does not mind doing other things, like playing with friends or doing Legos,  but he has a hard time shutting it off when asked. And while the 11 yo has gotten better, and his interest has waned somewhat, he has been too sedentary and is starting to put on a little weight.  We did make it so that no one can get on the computer at all without my typing in my password, so that has helped. I will be so glad when the K-12 year is over and we send the cursed computer back.

 

If your staying with K12 for next year you will keep the computer over the summer, JIC you didn't know:)


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#21 of 153 Old 05-18-2012, 01:14 PM
 
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Oh yeah, I never PAID for the game yet she had full access, she learned on YouTube how to play for free which I'm pretty sure is illegal. She didn't understand the problem with pirating,

There is a free version of the game that you can download from the official site. You can build, place blocks, etc but I don't think there are monsters. And you can't play multiplayer or anything.


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#22 of 153 Old 05-18-2012, 01:36 PM
 
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Oh yeah, I never PAID for the game yet she had full access, she learned on YouTube how to play for free which I'm pretty sure is illegal. She didn't understand the problem with pirating,

There is a free version of the game that you can download from the official site. You can build, place blocks, etc but I don't think there are monsters. And you can't play multiplayer or anything.

 

 

Pretty sure it was full version, she played with others and there were zombies. She's still ticked at me for cutting her off but oh well.


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#23 of 153 Old 05-19-2012, 03:13 AM
 
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Hi I have become concerned about our 9 year old - he is playing mincraft with every second available - I feel that he is missing out on life and not experiencing being a normal child - we are having arguments about this and I am not sure if I am overacting about this - last night he had such nightmares he said there where wolves chasing him - the wolves from minecraft!!! This is too much for me and I feel it is my fault that he is addicted to this game,

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#24 of 153 Old 05-19-2012, 06:28 AM
 
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Pretty sure it was full version, she played with others and there were zombies. She's still ticked at me for cutting her off but oh well.

My mistake, you CAN do multiplayer with the free version. It's a full version, just outdated. And it probably has monsters. I was asking ds what the difference was between the free version and the payed one and didn't get the same info as is on the website. My ds usually plays with the monsters turned off...


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#25 of 153 Old 05-19-2012, 06:32 AM
 
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Hi I have become concerned about our 9 year old - he is playing mincraft with every second available - I feel that he is missing out on life and not experiencing being a normal child - we are having arguments about this and I am not sure if I am overacting about this - last night he had such nightmares he said there where wolves chasing him - the wolves from minecraft!!! This is too much for me and I feel it is my fault that he is addicted to this game,

It's a very interesting and engaging game. Much more worthwhile than many other games, imo. He should be able to change the settings to "peaceful" if the monsters are too scary. There will still be wolves but ds says they only attack you if you attack them first. And wolves can be tamed if you right click on them with a bone.


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#26 of 153 Old 05-19-2012, 08:13 PM
 
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It's a very interesting and engaging game. Much more worthwhile than many other games, imo. He should be able to change the settings to "peaceful" if the monsters are too scary. There will still be wolves but ds says they only attack you if you attack them first. And wolves can be tamed if you right click on them with a bone.

My 6yo plays minecraft with her big brother and he always changes the settings to peaceful and dd (a VERY sensitive lo) is perfectly cool with it. No nightmares, nothing negative at all. Just lots of quality time with her big bro.

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#27 of 153 Old 06-04-2012, 04:40 AM
 
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I am starting to feel the same way about my 11 yr old son with Aspergers who is obsessed with Minecraft.  He has literally sat in front of the computer for 15 hours in one day when I was down with a migraine.  He'd just get up to eat and go to the bathroom. Now with summer coming, living in Orlando, with the horrible heat and expensive attractions, I'm hoping I can keep him occupied enough that he won't be glued to the computer all summer or throwing a fit! It's NOT a bad game, it's just too much of anything is too much...

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#28 of 153 Old 06-04-2012, 04:40 AM
 
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I am starting to feel the same way about my 11 yr old son with Aspergers who is obsessed with Minecraft.  He has literally sat in front of the computer for 15 hours in one day when I was down with a migraine.  He'd just get up to eat and go to the bathroom. Now with summer coming, living in Orlando, with the horrible heat and expensive attractions, I'm hoping I can keep him occupied enough that he won't be glued to the computer all summer or throwing a fit! It's NOT a bad game, it's just too much of anything is too much...

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#29 of 153 Old 06-25-2012, 04:15 PM
 
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Wow! I am so glad to read this!  My 11 year old plays Minecraft every second of the day that he can! I was getting worried...we have had both the Wii and the xbox for a few years and the kids hardly ever touched it.....Now, he discovered this Minecraft and he cannot stop! I had to finally slow it down...it is easier to say he cannot play for the whole day than to let him play for 1 hour! He gets so frustrated and keeps saying, 1 more minute.....1 more minute!  Now, he has his sister and all his friends playing it at our house.  We had 6 kids over one day and they were all in the basement taking turns playing Minecraft...(2 people at a time on the split screen)  It is addicting to them!! 

 

The funny thing is, there is not really any violence at all...they build things and collect things and whatever else.  I cannot figure out if it is a learning experience or a bad for them!

 

anyway, I guess once in a while is not bad, but, this game is definately addicting!!!

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#30 of 153 Old 06-26-2012, 06:23 AM
 
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OMG I am so glad I am not the only one!  My almost 8 year old is sooo addicted to Minecraft!  I told him I don't understand the addiction and he says he loves to build things.  I have limited him - he gets 1 hour in the am and 1 hour in the pm to play.  However, when I ask him to get off, he is always saying ok hold on, 1 more minute cuz he has to finish what he is building.  Last week his cousin slept over and they were on there for 5 hours straight!  I was ok with that because it was a sleepover.  I am thinking he is going to need glasses soon from staring at the screen!!

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