Can Pub Quiz Machines Be Addictive?

Pub quiz machines first made their appearance in the United Kingdom in 1985. They started out as a very simple and passive form of entertainment. Cash prizes have always been associated with these machines, but the point for many players was not entirely focused on the cash payout at first. Many players just enjoyed the challenge of trying to answer the questions. At any rate, the payouts for the quiz games were quite small. These days, things have changed somewhat, and more players than ever are becoming addicted to these machines.

These devices are sometimes referred to as SWP (Skill With Prize) machines. They pay out a certain amount to players that answer a certain number of questions correctly and in time. Some may also win free plays on the machine or other rewards. However, the vast majority of players win nothing at all (thus the reason the manufacturers can continue to create these games).

Evidently, there are a lot of people in the United Kingdom and beyond who really love their trivia. In fact, some experts now put "trivia" among some of the top modern day addictions. The prevalence of trivia is everywhere in our world. We see facts and figures on the news, on the Internet, and just about everywhere we turn.

Trivia addicts soak up every bit of trivia that they can get their hands on in the hopes of impressing others in the future. They may share little bits of knowledge about particular subjects that much of the rest of the world cares very little about. They also find it fun to daydream about winning a large sum of money on quiz machines or on some kind of quiz based game show.

There has yet to be firm empirical evidence that addiction to SWP machines is possible. There are theories that these machines could become addictive to a particular type of person, but so far this has not yet been studied well enough to prove anything.

The thing about SWP machines that could give them that potential hook into an addictive behaviour is that they combine many of the tactics that are so common in traditional slot machines for making a person an addicted player. These are things such as the "near-miss" experience and plenty of exciting lights and sounds to go along with the game play. That works on the brains of certain players pretty well to keep them playing.

Since 2010 the Gaming Commission in the UK has decided that SWP machines are something that they need to govern. There is a lot of debate about the level of skill required in a machine before it should be considered gambling. Currently, the UK Gaming Commission wants to keep an eye on these machines. There is potential for addiction with these machines, and that is something worth paying attention to.