Is there a reliable way for me to restrict my kid from playing Warcraft or Diablo on his PC?

Huge time wasting, academic failure and life destroying problem with his gaming addiction.

Internet explorer settings, wireless router restrictions? What are my options.

Any way to do this that won’t be subject to his Warcraft buddies telling him how to get around it?

Assuming you want to leave the internet connection available, uninstall the programs and periodically check to see that they’re not re-installed. Also, keep an eye on him.

In all honesty and directness? Remove the network cable/network card if computer use is still needed to do homework. If homework requires Internet access, too bad. He can use the computer at school.

Think of this as an addiction on his part. Think your response to his addiction as intervention/tough love.

Install Ubuntu.

He lives with his mother not me, and she is not willing to do anything re monitoring this. All I can do is tweak his PC.

Ethernet port is on the motherboard, non removable and he needs net connection for emailing assignments.

World of Warcraft Parental Control F.A.Q.

I think you will find something like the above is available for Diablo also.

If you’ve got Windows Vista you can create an Administrative account and set up Parent Control, in which you dictate when and for how long he can use the internet and which programs are and aren’t restricted. (I don’t know if you can do this on Windows XP or any other operating system).

Is uninstalling the programs and taking away the installation discs too obvious?

Unless the mother is willing to intervene I’d say your out of luck.

I doubt Diablo has any meaningful DRM, so he could just borrow friends disks and re-install. But if its a more modern OS, you could manage his permissions to keep him from being able to reinstall anything instead of just taking the disks.

I don’t know anything about Diablo, but WoW requires a credit card, doesn’t it? Can’t you cancel the account? (Or is his mother paying for it?)

Pull his graphics card and use the onboard if available or the shittiest card you can find. I’m assuming he doesn’t have a couple hundred to drop on a better card.

Aren’t those pay games? How is he paying for his access?

Neither is a subscription game and both are so graphically undemanding that the previous two suggestions are likely ineffective.

I’m pretty sure the OP is talking about Warcraft III instead of World of Warcraft.

The solution that I think most families use is to station the computer in a public place.

It’s World of Warcraft. He wheedles and begs the money off his sister to let him use her debit card.

I’m pretty sure you can buy prepaid cards for WoW at places like GameStop.

Tht’s how we went from WOW and and Nvidia 8800 to Diablo using onboard video. He just went back to the old school Diablo that would play on his machine (and was free) when I pulled the video card.

Diablo II requires the game CD to be present to start. Take away the CD, poof, “No Diablo for you!” even if the game is installed. Note that there are two versions of the game, the base version and the expansion version. He’s probably playing the expansion, which means the game CD would be “Diablo II: Lord of Destruction”. This won’t help if he has friends willing to loan him their CD, though, but that would mean that they couldn’t play the game, then.

But for any technological solution there is a technological workaround. And with a sufficiently motivated user, a workaround will eventually be found. The best long-term solutions are social solutions, such as to placing the computer in a public area that is easily viewable from different parts of the house.

As for World of Warcraft, you could get in contact with his guild, and ask them for help. If there are responsible folks in the guild, they could provide additional social pressure on him, too.