Lost In Cyberspace

Thousands join up every month. A sequel is in the works. Is the online game EverQuest dangerously addictive--or fun family fare?

When her husband came home with yet another shrink-wrapped computer game 18 months ago, Denise Dituri never suspected it would transform her into Lorelahna, the Druid of Dark Fury. This Sacramento, Calif., radio-station manager and mother of three had never been much of a fantasy buff. Dungeons and Dragons did not appeal. Lord of the Rings was just O.K. But somehow this game, EverQuest, was different. Soon Denise was playing 18 hours a week--and, paradoxically, spending more time with her family than ever. "The longest conversation in our house at dinner," she says, "is about what we've done in Norrath that...

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