Effects of Character Voice-over on Players’ Engagement in a Digital Role-Playing Game Environment JaeHwan Byun Virtual Environment Laboratory Southern Illinois University Carbondale
Background of the Study Really?Intellectual Then,Indignation How?
Background of the Study Gap inliterature 89 8 256 Ke, F. (2009).
Background of the Study Gap in Gaming Device (Computer)literature role-playing, narrative arcs, challenges, fantasy, interactive choices, characters in games, curiosity, clear goals, appropriate feedback, playfulness, implementing elements of mystery
Purpose of the studyTo determine whether or not the voice-over ofNon-Playing Characters in digital games has anyeffect on players’ engagement
Research QuestionWhat is the effect of non-player characters’voice-over on player engagement during digitalgame play?
Experimental Design Randomized control-group posttest only design Before treatment Treatment After treatmentVO group DS Voice-over GEQNVO Group DS Non Voice-over GEQ Independent Variable: NPCs’ voice-over Dependent Variable: Participants’ level of engagement
Research Subjects• Between 18 and 25 years old• Undergraduate students who spoke English as their first language• No prior gaming experience with “Neverwinter Nights 2”• No hearing and reading difficulties
Material (Research Game Mod)• Modified game from NWN 2 tutorial module• About 12 minutes long• Cinematic style conversation with NPCs
Experimental Environment• Two technically identical laptops in a room – One for VO group, One for NVO group• Headphones
Instruments• Demographic Questionnaire – To collect background information about the participants• Game Engagement Questionnaire – To measure participants’ engagement level – Modified from Brockmyer, Fox, Curtiss, McBroom, Burkhart & Pidruzny (2009) – Total 11 items
Results (Distribution of GEQ score) VO NVOFrequency GEQ score NVO VO
Results (Hypothesis Testing) t-test for Equality of Means t df Sig. Mean difference Std. Error difference2.45 72 .02 3.08 1.26 • Null hypothesis was rejected at the alpha level of .05 • Effect size, Cohens (1998) d, was .58.
Results (Finding)Players are significantly more engaged in adigital RPG environment when playing RPG withNPCs’ voice-over than when playing RPGwithout NPCs’ voice-over.
Conclusion (Discussion)• Aural components of digital games can be important factors affecting player engagement.• Audio stimuli should be included as a design factor engaging game players.
Conclusion (Implications)• For educational (and serious) game developers and game modders• For educational practitioners who are involved in educational multimedia development• Teachers (Trainers) who are selecting digital games for educational purpose
Conclusion (Recommendations)• Testing the validity of the GEQ for RPG• Replicating this study with different groups of participants• Improving the fidelity of the experimental conditions• Investigating the people who read dialog faster than they listen to voice-over