A Brit widow and a mother of three children got so involved in the virtual world of computers for six months that she forgot to make proper food for her kids and allowed her two dogs to starve to death.
The woman lead her German Shepherd and lurcher dogs starve to death and left them rotting in the dining room for two months as she played Small World on the internet almost non-stop.
The 33-year-old widow admitted three charges of child cruelty and two of animal neglect.
The children aged nine, 10 and 13, were badly neglected for six months.
Deepak Kapur, prosecuting, said when officers arrived at the house in Swanley, Kent, in February the woman told them it was in a bit of a mess.
The woman tried to block officers from entering the dining room and when asked why she replied: "All right, my dogs are in there. They are dead. I killed them," reports the Telegraph.
"I probably starved them, probably because I have been playing the computer game all the time," she added.
"Police discovered the bodies of the dogs. Flies were around them. The smell was so overpowering, making the officers wretch," said Kapur.
Allan Compton, defending, said the woman had been a competent mother until the death of her husband from a heart attack.
"She retreated into this virtual world provided by her laptop computer. She shut herself off from the outside world and operated in the real world on a very basic level," he said.
The mother has been sentenced to six months imprisonment suspended for two years and ordered to do 75 hours unpaid work. She was banned from keeping animals.
Judge Jeremy Carey told her: "I am satisfied you have been a good mother but your life went very badly wrong when you became obsessed with the Small World computer game."