Considering how popular the online, multiplayer game has become, you may have caught wind of all the hype over Clash of Clans.
Created by a company in Finland called Supercell, the notoriously addictive game is quite simple. Players come together to create "clans," who then go and attack other clans to earn gold throughout the game.
It's the perfect game for younger kids, especially kids who love games that have anything to do with battles, goblins, and destruction. However, what makes the game also so addictive is the social hierarchy that exists with other characters.
We've all experienced and witnessed bullying. It started from the games we used to play on the playground to the budding of cyber bullying through MySpace and Facebook. No matter how much you try to protect young children from bullying, games like Clash of Clans are popular because of the aggressive, challenging nature.
"Social patterns in the real world are replicated in the online world," said Caroline Knorr, parenting editor of Common Sense Media, for The New York Times. "It's not as easy as just saying, 'well, find another game or go on a different server.' Social circles coalesce around certain popular games. Kids even act them out on the playground. So not being a part of a group takes a toll."
The only thing we can do for our younger generation is to moderate what they play and to explain bullying, so that they could at least recognize it when the situation arises.
It's important for parents and teachers to educate children about the online world and to help them understand that excluding classmates or other players from a game can be a form of bullying.