back to article Dad hires online assassins to slay game-obsessed son

A Chinese Dad has come up with a unique way of persuading his game-addicted son to turn engage with the real world: hiring gaming pros to destroy his morale by hunting him down online. The frustrated father had apparently seen his 23-year-old offspring become obsessed with online games to the point that he had no interest in …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Short Sharp Shock (In meat space)

    You know they're gonna kill ya. So, like... if you give 'em a quick short, sharp shock, they don't do it again. Dig it? I mean he got off light, 'cos I could've given him a thrashing – I only hit him once! It's only a difference of right and wrong, isn't it? I mean, good manners don’t cost nothin', do they? Hey!

    1. Doogs

      Re: Short Sharp Shock (In meat space)

      There is no dark side of the moon really - as a matter of fact, it's all dark...

      That's today's playlist sorted then.

    2. The Man Who Fell To Earth Silver badge

      Business Opportunity

      This sounds like a business opportunity to put together online goon squads that are hired out to parents (or others). Probably could automate it too.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Business Opportunity

        Too late ;;-)

        Best Regards and Wishes to the family

    3. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Short Sharp Shock (In meat space)

      cruxifiction - best thing the Romans ever did for us

  2. Rampant Spaniel

    Love the Dad's thinking!

    1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      I do it myself

      If junior is overdoing it, I take on him mano a mano Doom with monsters set to nightmare on the house LAN. Or a strategy game of his choice. He is quickly reminded exactly how much does he yet have to learn which usually has the desired effect for a couple of months - namely him doing his homework first and games after that.

      1. PsychicMonkey

        Re: I do it myself

        erm... he's 23. Dopubt he's got any homework to do.

        How about just kick the lazy bastard out of the house to make the point?

        1. Silverburn

          Re: I do it myself

          Alternatively, replace his video card with a model from 2005, and drop his framerate down to slideshow levels of performance. When he gets a job he can buy his own hardware, and restore his framerate.

          Well, once he replaces his "new" 1ghz single core CPU as well...then there's the matter of his "new" 2.5" drive with no cache and tiny rpm rate...then there's the new internet and LAN hardware, as the original has "mysteriously" slowed to 56k modem speeds and latency...and there's the new RAM sticks, after his previous versions "mysteriously" develop a timing incompatibility...

          1. Andy Fletcher

            Re: I do it myself

            Going off on a tangent...I'm still trying to work out why on a 20Mb connection COD lags, when way back when on 56Kbps I used to have great games of Quake.

      2. Lamont Cranston

        Re: I do it myself

        What happens when he's able to kick your arse and tea-bag your (virtual) corpse? Does this end with him putting out his own eyes?

    2. t.est


      That treatment would have gotten me more involved, to make sure I beat my assassins.

      That is just the biggest carrot for me to play, beat those who did beat me. But then I do dislike most "war" games, with one exception the original Halo, and hmm Marathon, that's 2 exceptions.

      1. gromm

        Re: hmm...

        Yes, but a headshot to the back of the head upon respawn from a teammate is pretty hard to dodge. It might get you banned from the server, but the dude was paid to keep up the fight, so yanno, dedication.

        Dad's intention: Make kid ragequit for a few months. Maybe then he'll get off his ass.

  3. Anonymous Coward

    "Although physical violence was banned as a treatment back in 2009..."

    How forward-thinking of them.

    I mean, what bright spark was it that said to himself, "Hey, these kids - they're addicted to video games. You know what might work? Beating the snot out of them!"

    1. P. Lee

      > Hey, these kids - they're addicted to video games...

      I'm not sure that aged 23 you can still claim to be a kid.

      1. Martin Huizing

        Re: > Hey, these kids - they're addicted to video games...

        Mental capacity of a kid, perhaps...

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: > Hey, these kids - they're addicted to video games...

        Well the USians might... They canna even drink until 21! damn that was a rude shock when flying at 18 and they wouldn't give me wine with my meal...

        In china though, 23 I am sure he ain't a kid, even if he's acting like one...

    2. Psyx

      "I mean, what bright spark was it that said to himself, 'Hey, these kids - they're addicted to video games. You know what might work? Beating the snot out of them!'"

      Yup: If you've got a awkward, shy and insular individual who avoids face-to-face human contact and prefers to be alone in their room, the best way of getting them to venture out and engage in person with other people is to get people to kick the crap out of them.

      There's totally no way that'll drive them further from society and make them want to spend time murdering the feck out of people in a virtual world!

  4. Khaptain Silver badge

    Lucky it was only war games

    I can't imagine what would have happened if he had been addicted to porn ................ He might not have been able to sit down for weeks.

    1. petur

      Re: Lucky it was only war games

      ordering a new keyboard - spill resistant this time

  5. Moosey

    It's not an illness

    He has a choice, he's just choosing to be a bum...

    Beer: Because the dad deserves one for the amusing approach to solving the problem :o)

    1. Lamont Cranston

      Re: It's not an illness

      Video games might not be physically addictive, but the psychological effect should not be ignored. Humans are pretty weak and easy to manipulate, and online games are designed to hook you and keep you playing.

      Still, yes, +1 to the parent's original thinking, although I'd probably just have taken his PC away (or cut off the broadband).

  6. Winkypop Silver badge

    China Syndrome

    You play one war game, then half an hour later you need another.

  7. mIRCat

    Would you like to play a game?

    The only winning move is not to play.

  8. frank ly

    Assassins who snitch on their client?

    Failing to complete a contract or making a mess of it may be forgiveable, but breach of confidentiality is not.

    1. stanimir

      Re: Assassins who snitch on their client?

      I was thinking - heck those guys must be truly low paid and totally unprofessional, c'mon they told not only they are pro assassins but also revealed who has hired them.

      1. Silverburn

        Re: Assassins who snitch on their client?

        If the 12 yr old gamers that constantly whip my ass in MW3 are anything to go by, their ego's will be hyooooooj. They won't be able to help themselves and will openly boast about being hired 'assassins'.

    2. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

      Re: Assassins who snitch on their client?

      All of this presumably is happening because Chinese internet users are required to register in services with their real name.

  9. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Silverburn

      Re: The mind absolutely boggles ...

      My Clue meter is reading zero.

      Does it need more coffee?

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: The mind absolutely boggles ...

        I wrote something along the lines of: "My dad taught me how to raise pigs & make bacon and sausages. My mom taught me how to make pasta and grow tomatos."

        I retracted mine because i kinda figured that all y'all wouldn't understand :-/

        I'll try again ... I taught my daughter about the real world. She is doing well.

  10. Anonymous Coward 101

    Instead of 'hiring gaming pros to destroy his morale by hunting him down online', why not just hire some 'pros' to remind him of the pleasures of the real world?

    1. gromm

      That reminds me of a line out of "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" that goes "Once I learned the value of a hard-earned dollar..."

  11. Thomas 4
    IT Angle

    Should have played EVE Online

    I know a number of highly unsavory individuals that would be more than happy to grief someone repeatedly, often completely free of charge too, especially if there's lulz involved.

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

      Re: Should have played EVE Online

      ".....completely free of charge......" We'll, it's not like he created a game account in a girl's name, created an avatar with enormous boobs, then entered the forums and chat rooms asking for "help from any brave, manly warriors in dealing with a ganking clan", and implying such help might be rewarded with sexual favours, that kind of thing just wouldn't work with the average, socially-inept, male gamer.....

  12. Drefsab


    Id find this funny if the guys son was a more skilled player than the would be assassins and kicked their asses and carried on as normal :)

    1. TRT Silver badge

      Re: Lol

      Reminds me of that South Park episode.

      "This can mean only one thing. We are dealing with someone who has... no life."

      "How can you kill that which has no life?"

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Better choice than a possibly badly run addiction centre, I wouldn't trust any kind of addiction camp in the USA or UK with my sons, let alone one in China, no matter what rules they put in place, you can expect them to be broken no matter what the consequences.. I doubt they are trained psychologists, more likely thugs that saw an opportunity to make money if they beat sense into people...

  14. RyokuMas

    Coming soon to youtube...

    "Angry Chinese Kid"!

    ... I'll get me coat.

  15. Blofeld's Cat

    Career opportunity...

    Perhaps the son could become a professional online assassin.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Only 23?

    My nephew is 27 and still lives with his parents. He works enough to buy his weed and then plays Counter Strike for hours even when he could be out surfing or enjoying the sunshine. Sad!

    1. t.est

      Re: Only 23?

      hmm, maybe time for his parents to take their responsibility?

      Find a apartment for him, kick him out, pay one month of rent. Make sure he has one bed, one chair, one table, one spoon, one fork, one knife, one plate, one glass, one roll of toilet paper.

      The clothing he can pack with him of what he want's to keep. Store the rest 3 months in the garage, then burn or give away, if he hasn't picked it up before then.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Only 23?

        Interestingly that sounds like the opposite of taking responsibility to me, a lot more like "washing their hands of the problem."

        So what happens, if they fail to adjust to society they go onto job seekers allowance, maybe they fail at that due to being socially inept and just end up sofa surfing and then living on the streets...

        Doesn't sound like a very responsible approach to me.

        1. Minophis
          Thumb Up

          Re: Only 23?

          The job of a parent isn't to coddle their children endlessly, it's to teach their children to be self reliant and able to cope and indeed thrive in the real world. If someone without severe disabilities is not capable of managing that by 27 something has gone wrong and something should really be done. Booting out does seem a bit harsh but that sounds like a problem case. Anyway if the counterstrike playing pothead is shocked into at least attempting to cope on their own then following up with a bit of parental support wouldn't go amiss.

          If a bird is going to fly for the first time it has to be kicked out of the nest

          1. MahFL22


            Most actually leave the nest instinctively, some are eaten by birds of prey......

      2. Anonymous Coward

        Re: Only 23?

        " roll of toilet paper."

        He probably doesn't have a girlfriend. Better make it two.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Only 23?

      Yeah, there should be a law forcing people to grow up. Ironing shirts, sitting in traffic, paying bills, much more fun.

  17. adam payne

    I like the dad's thinking on this one but i'd have just removed the plug.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This is the real up and coming issue with games, not violence, but complete apathy towards real life.

    There are lots of problems, a person starts not doing to well in society (failing school, bullying, can't get a job, etc) so they start to move towards other things they are good at, e.g. a certain game, this gives them a purpose and they start to disengage entirely. Not making friends, not getting jobs / studying, not washing, etc.

    The more disengaged they become the more difficult it is to reverse.

    A lot like the Japanese "Hikikomori"

    Fortunately for me, no matter how much my life sucks I can't fall into being a perpetual game player as I suck.

  19. M7S

    Legal issue?

    Just some musings as I read this, and I'd be interested in any considered replies:

    IIRC, in some (real) jurisdictions a value can be ascribed to a virtual asset in respect of the cost/time spent building up, for example, a character. I don't think it's gained much traction yet, and I may be incorrect, but I seem to recall this has been found in law somewhere or other.

    Now leaving aside the issue of this asset being destroyed, or at least reasonably put at risk, by willing participation in the game, and also the particular jurisdiction in this case (I know nothing of Chinese law, and my premise is based on a laymans knowledge of UK law, with US taints) is there an avenue by which some future lawyer might have a shot at the father (and possibly others) for in effect conspiring to destroy the property of another? In this case the fact that the son (or it could be another person) is being targeted in a way beyond the expectations of a normal player might be the deciding factor. If so I am sure another lawyer would have a pop at the service provider for failing to protect the son's assets as well.

    Could such a course of action alter online gaming as you know it?

    1. Peter2 Silver badge

      Re: Legal issue?

      IANAL, but I work for one and I have the 60 odd volumes of Halisbury's laws of England, and the encylopedia of forms and precedents in two bookcases behind me in my office.

      Firstly, your not actually "destroying" assets as you can respawn. If you were, then taking the argument to it's logical conclusion anybody participating in a game would be causing criminal damage.

      As so far as I know there is no law anywhere in the laws of England that would specifically prohibit somebody from hiring somebody to spawn kill somebody persistantly, although a search suggests that the "Protection from Harassment Act 1997" could be potentially applicable due to it's extremely vague wording on what harrassement constitutes, should one wish to bring a private conviction.

      I will note that the chances of getting the court case accepted into an English court are negligable, since spurious prosecutions tend to attract the wrath of judges for bringing the law into disrepute. Even if the case did go ahead, you'd have to persuade a jury that daddy was harrassing you while you were maintaining good enough relations with him to be able to live in his house.

      Good luck with that!

  20. mark 63 Silver badge

    “therapeutic” beatings.

    was this a new thing developed for online addiction?

    Of can it be applied to all forms of rehab?


    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: “therapeutic” beatings.

      Interestingly, if you go by popular catchphrases, there are far fewer things that can be beaten into people than can be beaten out of them.


      - Sense

      - Respect

      - Manners


      - Shit

      - Tar

      - Hell

      - Truth

      - Daylights

      - Crap

      - Piss

      - PGP Key

      ...I think it's time for a more comprehensive study.

      1. Charlie van Becelaere

        Re: “therapeutic” beatings.

        Based upon your list, it appears that the odds of a positive outcome are quite good.

        Selecting any one item at random (with its addition / deletion attached, natch), we see that at least eight of the outcomes are good (sense, respect, and manners in, shit, tar, hell, crap, and piss out) with the remaining three a potentially mixed bag (one ought to retain truth, I don't know about daylights,really, and the PGP key depends upon the circumstances, I suppose.), making it a 72.7% probability of a desirable outcome.

        Those are pretty good odds, and may help to explain the corporate policy - the beatings will continue until morale improves. Of course, more research is needed in this matter.

  21. Concrete Cowboy

    ...“therapeutic” beatings?

    Why does this remind me of Rowan Atkinson and his "Fatal Beating" skit?

  22. Anonymous Coward

    I wonder theirs a future for the Mafia in this....

    "Yeah, wez can help yuh with your computer nut son, Mr. Sangenti. However, Don Franco will require that yuh do him a service at some timez in the future, a service with no questions asked...."

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: I wonder theirs a future for the Mafia in this....

      Stupid error use of "theirs" by yours truly! That's what I get for throwing together a reply so quickly....

  23. koswix

    Did you here about the Chinese-German war game?

    20 minutes after playing you're still hungry for power.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They're in China,

    They can't just blame the government, like you can over here...

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