Objective: Prospective data of risky online gamers in Turkey is missing. Therefore, we aimed to investigate the change in gaming behaviors and addiction rates of Travian players within two years to search diagnostic stability of internet gaming disorder and some psychosocial risk factors.
Methods: 110 responders completed the whole questionnaire package including 21-item Game Addiction Scale (GAS), Satisfaction with Life Scale (SLS), Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSES), and Multi-dimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS). A hierarchical linear modeling approach was followed to test the linear change in game addiction scores of the participants from 2013 to 2015.
Results: GAS scores of gamers significantly decreased within two years (p=0.026). MSPSS scores significantly and negatively associated with GAS scores (p<0.001) and the negative association of time remained significant (p=0.035). Decrement in the MSPSS scores in two years was associated with increment in GAS scores. 9 (90%) of 10 participants with internet gaming disorder according to monothetic format and 26 (52%) of 50 participants with internet gaming disorder according to polythetic format were found to not to meet the diagnosis in the follow-up. 33 out of all participants reported that they were not playing any online games for at least last 6 months.
Conclusion: Social support seems to be a protective factor for game addiction and diagnosis of internet gaming disorder has low temporal stability among Travian players in Turkey.
Keywords: Diagnostic stability; Internet gaming disorder; Life satisfaction; Online game addiction; Self-esteem; Social support.