UPDATED: See note below
A 33-year-old mother has been banned from using computers after her obsession with a computer game led her to neglect her three children and the family's two pet dogs, the Daily Mail reports.
The woman, who, for legal reasons, was not identified, "played the Small World game almost non-stop on the internet for months while her children were reduced to eating cold baked beans straight from the tin with their fingers," writes the Daily Mail. "Her home became filthy, with rubbish strewn over the floor and the bodies of her two dogs, a German shepherd and a lurcher, left for two months in the dining room it was revealed."
The paper notes her husband had died from a heart attack several years before and, in 2009, she started playing the computer game for an hour a day. According to the Telegraph, beginning in August 2009, the game "had become an obsession to the point where she was only getting two hours sleep a night."
The mother has three children, ages 9, 10 and 13, who were reportedly "badly neglected for six months." In addition to being barred from using computers, she has received a suspended jail sentence.
Earlier this year, a game-addicted South Korean couple was found guilty of letting their newborn baby starve to death while tending to a virtual child in the online game "Prius." The Associated Press reported, "The couple played at Internet cafes on average 10 hours every day and bottle-fed their baby only once a day, prosecutors said in an affidavit."
NOTE: An earlier version of this post stated that the mother had become addicted the game "Small World," as the Daily Mail had reported. However, CNET posted a statement from the CEO of Days of Wonder, the maker of Small World, suggesting that the game in question might actually have been "Small Worlds." Read Days of Wonder's statement here.
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