Marathon online gaming session leaves man dead

2015-01-20 08:21

A 32-year-old Taiwanese man was found dead after playing online games for three days straight at an internet café in southern Taiwan, police said today.

It was the island’s second death involving an online gamer this year.

The man, whose surname was Hsieh, entered Chu Hsiang Internet Café on January 6 and was found motionless and sprawled on a table in the morning on January 8, according to Kaohsiung City police.

He was pronounced dead of cardiac failure and his body was sent to the hospital.

“The man had a small struggle for about 15 minutes before he collapsed motionless, the CCTV footage from the internet cafe showed,” said Jennifer Wu, a police spokesperson from the Hunei district precinct.

Other gamers wearing earphones did not notice Hsieh’s collapse, Wu said. An employee did not realise that Hsieh was not breathing until two hours later.

The unemployed Hsieh frequently visited the café and often played for consecutive days, Wu said, citing the police investigation.

Police were troubled by the disinterested attitude of fellow patrons, the precinct said.

“We went inside to cordon off the tables and had investigators there to gather evidence. Only then did the other patrons realise that someone had died, but they still showed no concern and kept playing their games,” the Hunei police precinct said.

Low temperatures and exhaustion from intense game-playing likely contributed to Hsieh’s heart failure, precinct chief Weng Chun-neng said.

It was the second death blamed on prolonged computer gaming in Taiwan this year. On January 1, a 38-year-old man was found dead at an internet café after playing online games for five days straight in northern New Taipei City.

In 2012, the body of man who died playing online games went unnoticed for 10 hours by other gamers and staff, the Taipei Times reported.

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