CYBER: When the Video Game Reaches Out to Ask You to Spend More Money

‘State of Survival’ and ‘Game of Thrones: Conquest’ players said they felt pressure from the community and the game itself.
State of Survival promotional image.
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Hacking. Disinformation. Surveillance. CYBER is Motherboard's podcast and reporting on the dark underbelly of the internet.

We’ve all gotten a little too involved in a video game. I’ve talked repeatedly about how I’ve gotten lost in trying to complete maps in open world games like Assassin’s Creed. And there’s a million stories out there about kids who spent all their parents' money on upgrades in Farmville. But when I say the words State of Survival or Game of Thrones: Conquest, what comes to mind? Crappy ads on Facebook? Weird looking games that are obvious money pits? Yes, but there’s something a little more insidious going on. It’s an evolution of the old addictive mobile game formula. One that’s generated a new lawsuit.


On this episode of Cyber, Motherboard Senior Editor Maxwell Strachan comes on to talk about the new era of mobile games, the price of addiction, and the people suing for false advertising.

Stories discussed in this episode:

‘Game of Thrones: Conquest’ and ‘State of Survival’ Players Say They Felt Addicted and Pressured To Spend

CYBER: How Corporations and Governments Use Games to Control Us

Confessions of a Semi-Reformed Video Game Completionist

B.F. Skinner on his beef with Noam Chomsky

On Chomsky's Appraisal of Skinner's Verbal Behavior: A Half Century of Misunderstanding

We’re recording CYBER live on Twitch and YouTube. Watch live during the week. Follow us there to get alerts when we go live. We take questions from the audience and yours might just end up on the show. 

Subscribe to CYBER on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to your podcasts.