A Multi-Analysis of Children and Adolescents' Video Gaming Addiction with the AHP and TOPSIS Methods

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2022 Aug 5;19(15):9680. doi: 10.3390/ijerph19159680.


The video game market has become increasingly popular among children and adolescents in recent decades. In this research, we investigated the Video Game Addiction Scale (VGAS) for Chinese children and adolescents. We aimed to examine children and adolescents' prioritization on the VGAS criteria and comparative analysis of the trend of video game addiction among them. A cross-sectional paper questionnaire study was conducted on 1400 Chinese students from grade 3 (9 years old) to grade 12 (18 years old). The respondents had to complete the socio-demographic information and the VGAS test. The VGAS characteristic was prepared in 18 criteria, which was the combination of the Video Game Addiction Test (VAT), Gaming Addiction Scale (GAS), and Revised Chinese Internet Addiction (CIAS-R). Eventually, the VGAS criteria prioritization was ranked methodologically through the Technique for Order Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS) method for each grade separately. Additionally, the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) weighting technique was utilized to analyze the video game addiction of each grade under the four alternatives, individually. The results indicate that 3rd-grade students with some levels of addiction were the youngest who felt their life would not be fun without video games. Students in 5th grade with some levels of addiction were the youngest students who disclosed that their willingness to play video games is for forgetting their problems or feeling down. Moreover, they played video games more than before, thus, they did not sleep enough. Pupils of grade 6 reported that they played video games more than last semester. In their opinion, it is fair to play video games this much and does not need to reduce playing hours. Not getting enough sleep because of playing video games was seen in 7th graders as their first preference. 10th-grade students were the first to neglect to do their important responsibilities for playing video games. None of the 7th and 12th graders were somehow safe from video game addiction. In conclusion, playing video games can negatively affect studying, sleeplessness, getting far from society, and skipping important responsibilities for school students. Furthermore, the symptoms of video game addiction had seen at younger ages. These data provided insights for decision-makers to target effective measures to prevent children and adolescents' video game addiction.

Keywords: Video Game Addiction Scale; children and adolescents; the AHP method; the TOPSIS method.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior*
  • Analytic Hierarchy Process
  • Behavior, Addictive* / diagnosis
  • Behavior, Addictive* / epidemiology
  • Child
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Humans
  • Video Games*

Grant support

This research received no external funding.