Title: Emotional involvement in digital games

Authors: Gordon Calleja

Addresses: The Center for Computer Games Research, IT-University of Copenhagen, Rued Langaardsvej, 7, Copenhagen 2300, Denmark

Abstract: Digital games have become a pervasive aspect of the contemporary media landscape, yet our understanding of the way they engage players is limited. Experiential studies of games have the added complexity of plugging human consciousness in the cybernetic circuit that generates game-play. Quite simply games require input from players in order to occur. The nature of this cybernetic circuit means that the forms of engagement enabled by digital games are considerably different from those of other non-interactive media. This calls for theoretical models and analytical tools developed specifically with digital games in mind. This paper describes such a model which aims to enhance our understanding of digital game involvement. The model addresses a variety of experiential dimensions related to game-play, but will here focus primarily on the affective dimension.

Keywords: emotions; affect; affective involvement; digital games; immersion; player engagement; emotional involvement; interactive media; modelling; game playing; massively multiplayer online games; MMOGs; online gaming; player involvement.

DOI: 10.1504/IJART.2011.037767

International Journal of Arts and Technology, 2011 Vol.4 No.1, pp.19 - 32

Available online: 27 Dec 2010

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