Abstract

The popularity of online games has driven the development of online pets. Players obtain a sense of satisfaction through raising an online pet that cannot be realized in real life. Online pet games emphasize the enjoyment of raising a pet, the interaction between players, and the expression of players’ personal uniqueness. Identifying why players like to continue interacting with online pets can help game designers develop a better game and increase players’ positive experiences when playing online pet games. Based on flow theory, this study not only analyzes players’ flow process and playing factors, but also identifies game activities that can cause flow experience. This study collected 175 valid questionnaires and shows that players of online pets experience flow based on a game’s attractiveness, which may cause addiction. Two game activities (“decorating pets or game scenes” and “going through game tasks”) were key points resulting in a flow experience. Game designers can strengthen players’ flow experience and decrease the chances of addiction through innovative game mechanics.

Keywords

online pet, flow, addiction

COinS
 
Jul 1st, 12:00 AM

Exploring User Playing Factors for Online Pets

The popularity of online games has driven the development of online pets. Players obtain a sense of satisfaction through raising an online pet that cannot be realized in real life. Online pet games emphasize the enjoyment of raising a pet, the interaction between players, and the expression of players’ personal uniqueness. Identifying why players like to continue interacting with online pets can help game designers develop a better game and increase players’ positive experiences when playing online pet games. Based on flow theory, this study not only analyzes players’ flow process and playing factors, but also identifies game activities that can cause flow experience. This study collected 175 valid questionnaires and shows that players of online pets experience flow based on a game’s attractiveness, which may cause addiction. Two game activities (“decorating pets or game scenes” and “going through game tasks”) were key points resulting in a flow experience. Game designers can strengthen players’ flow experience and decrease the chances of addiction through innovative game mechanics.

 

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