China: 13-year-old girl blows family savings, spends around Rs 52 lakh on mobile games

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Gaming addiction has led a 13-year-old Chinese girl to spend over 449,500 yuan (Rs 52 lakh) saved by her family within four months. The girl used to buy various microtransactions in the game that added up to most of her spending.

According to SCMP, the girl’s teacher noticed her playing games on her mobile phone and informed her parents their kid might be addicted to those online games with microtransactions and a pay-to-play model.

When her parents checked their bank accounts they found that they only had 0.5 yuan and confronted the girl. The 13-year-old admitted to spending money to buy games for approximately 120,000 yuan and in-game purchases worth 210,000 yuan.

She also bought games for her friends worth 100,000 yuan, who, according to the girl, asked her to pay for the games they wanted after watching her spend huge amounts on games and in-game cosmetics.

On being asked about her spending the girl said that she had no idea how much money she was using or where it came from. She said that to make cash withdrawals for other purposes; she only linked the debit card to her smartphone using the password her mother had given her.

A 2022 study on smartphone addiction by McGill University found that the majority of addicts are in China, followed by Saudi Arabia and Malaysia. The study was done on 34,000 participants between the ages of 15 and 35 from 24 nations.

This gaming addiction is also one of the reasons why the Chinese government recently put restrictions on children playing video games in the country. A similar case also occurred in India shortly after, where a 16-year-old boy spent over Rs 36 lakh on mobile games.