Why are some games so addictive?

Some games are addictive, as anyone who likes to compete with others can testify, and the root cause of this phenomenon can be found in the brain. The reward system, consisting of an elaborate network of neural structures, evolved over millions of years to release certain neurochemicals whenever animals engage in certain activities and winning a game will trigger the release of these reward hormones in humans. People become addicted to sports, board games, computer games and casino games by chasing the high of victory.

Sports enthusiasts, whose favourite activities include competing on the football field or around the snooker table, can experience a state of euphoria when they defeat an opponent or attain a specific goal. Athletes, such as competitive runners or swimmers, may become addicted to the positive feelings that are associated with winning a race. The high associated with success, caused by dopamine or endorphins, may also be felt by sports fans when their team wins.

Games that require mental acuity to play, such as Chess or Go, can be as addictive as sports that require physical skill or stamina. Competitions that revolve around mental, rather than physical, ability can trigger the reward system to release the same neurochemicals that are associated with success in sports. Dice-based games, although dictated by chance, trigger the reward systems of players when the dice roll in their favour.

Casino games, such as Blackjack or Poker, attract players with the prospect of financial rewards but the reason that gamblers find these games so addictive is that their brains release reward hormones when their numbers come up on the Roulette wheel or they hit the jackpot on a slot machine. Roulette, one of the most addictive casino games, originated in 18th century France and in the 21st century gamblers were able to play the game online. The best digital casinos, such as Online Roulette Casino, provide Roulette games to their online customers.