A 32-year-old American man apparently died of a heart attack at his desk while playing computer game Diablo 3, according to his colleague who blogged about and tweeted the news of his death.
Russell Shirley, a writer for a computer gaming website, had apparently taken four days' leave to play the game. Ben Dorris, the blogger who had spread word of the death, said Shirley had died of a heart attack due to his unhealthy lifestyle.
Shirley's family and friends have since come forward to refute claims that he had died while playing the game, saying instead that he had died of sleep apnea, a condition he had suffered from for many years that causes sufferers to stop breathing in their sleep.
Dorris's blog posts have since been taken down.
STOMPer Khanduras wrote:
"The exact cause of this man's death is still in question, but I think the lesson we can take away from this whole episode is that we should take care of our health and not get too carried away playing games.
"Other people have died playing computer games in the past, because they let their bodies starve or become too exhausted while playing.
"I understand that Shirley suffered from sleep apnea, which causes him to sometimes stop breathing while sleeping. I feel it is dangerous for a person with a history of such a condition to go for long hours without rest, which is what he did, it seems.
"I too play this game and it is great fun. But I also try to take frequent breaks, and I have a cut-off time each day to ensure I don't go overboard.
"To the family and friends of Shirley, my sincerest condolences."
Pics 1-5 are related to Shirley's death, while the rest show the Diablo launch in Singapore, as well as the antics of die hard fans around the world.