Dreams and Video Game Play<br />Jayne Gackenbach<br />Grant MacEwan University & <br />Athabasca University<br />Games for...
Why are dreams important?<br />Rich history across most cultures<br />Royal road to the unconscious – Freud<br />While ope...
Why are dreams important?<br />Function of dreams increasingly clear<br />Evolutionary threat/play (Revonsuo; Humphrey)<br...
Why study gamers dreams?<br />Media saturated society<br />Video game play represents the most immersive and interactive m...
Presence in Games and Dreams<br />Dreams have been called the “gold standard” for presence (sense of being there) in VR an...
Presence sum score NO DIFFERENCE<br />Items (12) got 4 differences 8 NO DIFFERENCE:<br />The dream/game caused real feelin...
Gamer Defined<br />Play video games on average several times a week<br />Typical playing session more than 1 or 2 hours<br...
Dream Dimensions Examined<br />Lucid and Control Dreams<br />Bizarreness and Creativity<br />Nightmares and Threat Simulat...
Lucid – Control Dreams<br />Gackenbach, J.I. (2006). Video game play and lucid dreams: Implications for the development of...
Lucid – Control Dreams & Gaming<br />Subject #014: Lucidity triggered by an event<br />		Michael: Well, once Jean Grey (a ...
Control Dreaming<br />3=<br />sometimes<br />2= rarely<br />
Lucid Dreaming<br />3=<br />sometimes<br />2= rarely<br />
Gamer Sample Lucid/Control Dream<br />Subject #014: Lucidity triggered by an event<br />		Well, once Jean Grey (a marvel c...
Methodological Refinement<br />Gackenbach, J.I. (2009) Electronic media and lucid-control dreams: Morning after reports. D...
Methodological Refinement<br />Previous studies long term retrospective memory<br />Collected Dream report and when<br />N...
Principal Component Factor Analysis on Dream, Gamer and Media Use<br />Last night, rested dreams, N = 152<br />Dreams Self...
Parallels video gaming/lucidity<br />Video game Play	<br />video games technologically constructed alternative realities<b...
Is the Lucidity – Video Game Play Association Self Selection? <br />Yes<br />To be a serious player you need to not suffer...
Bottom Line<br />Gaming is too wide spread to reduce to purely self selection<br />There is increasing social pressure to ...
Original Dream Content Analysis<br /><ul><li>Hall &Van de Castle Coding System
Frequency equals intensity
High inter-rater reliability
Well developed norms
Uses categories which are pertinent to waking concerns that may influence dreaming.
Those that lead to further research were:
characters, aggression and misfortune.
Gackenbach, J.I., Matty, I., Kuruvilla, B., Samaha, A. N., Zederayko, A., Olischefski, J. & Von Stackelberg, H. (2009). Vi...
Significant Differences from Male Norms <br />More dead or imaginary characters appearing in dream reports (21% vs 0%).<br...
Dead or Imaginary Characters<br />Subject 001- Dream 11<br />“I dreamt I was a character is Underworld 2, it was a werewol...
Dream Aggression Example<br />Subject 002- Dream 6<br />    “… I went outside … with my cat and shot these criminals that ...
Dream Misfortunes<br />Fewer Misfortunes <br />(7% vs 36%)<br />Fewer Bodily Misfortunes<br />(0% vs 29%)<br />Aggression ...
Dream Bizarreness<br />Gackenbach, J. I., Kuruvilla, B., & Dopko, R. (2009). Video game play and dream bizarreness. Dreami...
Domhoff – 2007 meta-analysis<br />dreams are more coherent, patterned and thoughtful than previously suggested<br />still ...
Methods<br />Study 1: Recent Dreams<br />Self reported dream questions<br />Various media use information<br />Study 2: Tw...
Unusual (subject)<br />Bizarre (judges)<br />Non-bizarre (judges)<br />Low Game  Group<br />High Game Group<br />Covariate...
Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking<br />No gamer group difference for verbal test<br />Significant differences for figura...
Gaming, Bizarreness & Creativity<br />
Factor Analysis on Game Play, Lucid Related Dream & Bizarreness Variables<br />Gaming loads with and without lucidity-cont...
Nightmares & Threat Simulation<br />Gackenbach, J.I. & Kuruvilla, B. (2008). The relationship between video game play and ...
Threat Simulation Theory<br />dreaming is an adaptive process with an evolutionary foundation (Revonsuo, 2000). <br />drea...
Dreams Collected<br />Online Questionnaires<br />night before dreams only, <br />average hours since dream to recollection...
Principle Component Factor Analysis of Media, Threat Simulation Intensity, and Dream Self Evaluation Variables<br />Gaming...
Nightmares versus Bad Dreams<br />Le, H. & Gackenbach, J. (2009). Nightmares of Video Game Players: What do They Look Like...
Method<br />Participants<br />231 low- and 222 high end gamers<br />Instruments<br />Media usage questionnaire<br />Impact...
HVDC Aggression Sum Score<br />Nightmares<br />Bad Dreams<br />Low Game  Group<br />High Game Group<br />
HVDC Misfortune Sum Score<br />Bad Dreams<br />Nightmares<br />Low Game  Group<br />High Game Group<br />
Judge Rated Emotionality (HVDC)<br />Consistent findings with previous research<br />Nightmares had more negative emotions...
Self-Rated Emotionality Scale of Dream<br />No gamer group difference or dream type difference<br />Self rated emotions: a...
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  • As just seen in the bizarreness study, in several studies, with increasing methodological sophistication, Lucid/control dreams and gaming have been found to be associated. Here is an example – push audio button
  • As just seen in the bizarreness study, in several studies, with increasing methodological sophistication, Lucid/control dreams and gaming have been found to be associated. Here is an example – push audio button
  • So the question becomes, is the association between lucid dreaming and video game play self selected? Well yes and no. To be a serious player you need to not suffer motion sicknessAlmost all children through to young adults play some form these days and indeed I’ve spoken to gamers who are susceptible to motion sickness and they say they prefer games that do not bring it on.For serious game play spatial skills are an advantageSpatial skills improve with play if not to the extent of those with a gaming historyMost games of serious players cater to boysGirl games are being developed and is a large growing market and the largest gaming market now is the casual gaming market which is dominated by middle aged women!Those who are able to get absorbed should do betterAttention/absorption improve with play but again not to the extent of those with a long history of play
  • Video gaming is one of the fastest growing entertainment industries with revenues arguably the same as or greater than the movie industry depending on how you count.Therefore gaming is too wide spread to reduce to purely self selection.There is something enticing about being in virtual worlds and there is increasing social pressure to play.
  • In this factor analysis there are three types of variables: gaming, dream type, and dream bizarreness. Gaming is entered both as history of game play (sum of z-scores of frequency of play, length of play, number of games played and age begun playing) and as day before the dream game play. Dreamers were asked to identify if the dream was lucid, had a third person perspective (observer) and controlablity. Finally subscales from the Revonsuo and Salmivalli scale were entered. It can be seen that gaming was associated with and without lucidity-control but with lucidity-control you have bizarreness. Thus the notion of gaming as mythological re-enactment is supported at a deeply unconscious level.
  • In order to further delve into the lucidity/gamer relationship let’s now turn our attention to a content analysis of Lucid vsNonlucid Dreams of Gamers from 4 Previous Studies. We used the Hall &amp; Van de Castle Content Analysis system. While not as many female as male dreams nor as many lucid as nonlucid dreams still there is enough to consider if there are differences WITHIN GAMERS between their lucid and their nonlucid dreams.
  • Using Schneider and Domhoff’s SAT spreadsheet, we found that lucid dreams for gamers were more aggressive than their nonlucid dreams. The settings were less familiar. There was less self negativity with more general success and dreamer involved success. Finally there was more sexual elements in these gamers dreams. In short, these are the differences one would expect with lucid-control dreaming, in which lucid dreams deliberately tend toward an overall much more positive dream atmosphere. Although there was no differences in dream types in dream emotions that reached significance. The one apparent exception is the higher physical aggression in lucid than in non-lucid dreams of gamers. However, given the otherwise positive dream experience, it is likely that the gamers themselves view their often consciously deliberate aggression in these lucid dreams positively, much as they do in gaming.
  • Transcript of "Dreams and video game play games for health conference 2010"

    1. 1. Dreams and Video Game Play<br />Jayne Gackenbach<br />Grant MacEwan University & <br />Athabasca University<br />Games for Health 2010 Conference<br />Boston, MA<br />gackenbachj@macewan.ca<br />
    2. 2. Why are dreams important?<br />Rich history across most cultures<br />Royal road to the unconscious – Freud<br />While opened up dreams as important, he also pathologized them<br />With discovery of REM sleep and the sleep laboratory, dreams entered science<br />While not local only to REM, those that are most recalled and most often puzzled about are typically REM dreams<br />
    3. 3. Why are dreams important?<br />Function of dreams increasingly clear<br />Evolutionary threat/play (Revonsuo; Humphrey)<br />Emotional Regulation, especially negative emotions (Kramer; Nielsen; Zadra)<br />Memory integration & consolidation (Stickgold)<br />Problem-solving, creative inspiration (Barrett)<br />Metacognition (LaBerge; Kahan; Kahn)<br />All this serves personal and interpersonal needs if shared and processed but need not be<br />
    4. 4. Why study gamers dreams?<br />Media saturated society<br />Video game play represents the most immersive and interactive media experience<br />Isn’t it all just incorporation?<br />Yes gamers dream about games<br />And no,<br /> Example of value of studying gamers dreams...<br />Gamers dreams show fundamental structural differences <br />
    5. 5. Presence in Games and Dreams<br />Dreams have been called the “gold standard” for presence (sense of being there) in VR and games (Revonsuo; Moller & Barbera)<br />Never measured until now (Gackenbach & Rosie, 2010)<br />Played Mirror’s Edge in lab before sleep<br />Gathered dreams for next two weeks<br />Presence measured after game and after dreams<br />
    6. 6. Presence sum score NO DIFFERENCE<br />Items (12) got 4 differences 8 NO DIFFERENCE:<br />The dream/game caused real feelings and emotions for me. (Dream > Game)<br />Overall how much did the things/people in the dream/game look like they would if you had experienced them in waking reality? (Dream > Game)<br />How much did you feel like the events of the dream/game were happening to you? (Dream > Game)<br />How often did you feel "My body was in bed, but my mind was inside my dream" or "My body was in this room, but my mind was inside the environment I saw/heard"? (Game > Dream)<br />Presence in Games and Dreams<br />
    7. 7. Gamer Defined<br />Play video games on average several times a week<br />Typical playing session more than 1 or 2 hours<br />Played 50 or more video games over your lifetime<br />Been playing video games since before grade three<br />Type of Game Preferred only considered in latest studies, seemed to make no difference 5 years ago<br />
    8. 8. Dream Dimensions Examined<br />Lucid and Control Dreams<br />Bizarreness and Creativity<br />Nightmares and Threat Simulation<br />
    9. 9. Lucid – Control Dreams<br />Gackenbach, J.I. (2006). Video game play and lucid dreams: Implications for the development of consciousness. Dreaming, 16(2), 96-110.<br />Gackenbach, J.I. & Kuruvilla, B. (2008). Video game play effects on dreams: Self-evaluation and content analysis. Eludamos. Journal for Computer Game Culture. 2(2), 169-186.<br />Gackenbach, J.I. (2009). Video Game Play and Consciousness Development: A Replication and Extension. International Journal of Dream Research, 2(1), 3-11.<br />
    10. 10. Lucid – Control Dreams & Gaming<br />Subject #014: Lucidity triggered by an event<br /> Michael: Well, once Jean Grey (a marvel comic and video game character) got loose and started killing people, I was like this is really weird this is probably a dream and it was like right after that she showed up and I told myself that I need to wake up. I thought that something bad was supposed to happen and I didn’t want it to happen so I should wake up.<br />Gackenbach, et al. (2009) <br />
    11. 11. Control Dreaming<br />3=<br />sometimes<br />2= rarely<br />
    12. 12. Lucid Dreaming<br />3=<br />sometimes<br />2= rarely<br />
    13. 13. Gamer Sample Lucid/Control Dream<br />Subject #014: Lucidity triggered by an event<br /> Well, once Jean Grey (a marvel comic and video game character) got loose and started killing people, I was like this is really weird this is probably a dream and it was like right after that she showed up and I told myself that I need to wake up. I thought that something bad was supposed to happen and I didn’t want it to happen so I should wake up.<br />Gackenbach, 2006, 2009a, b; & Kurvilla, 2008; <br />Gackenbach, et al. (2009). <br />
    14. 14. Methodological Refinement<br />Gackenbach, J.I. (2009) Electronic media and lucid-control dreams: Morning after reports. Dreaming, 19(1), 1-6.<br />
    15. 15. Methodological Refinement<br />Previous studies long term retrospective memory<br />Collected Dream report and when<br />Normal sleep length and rested amount<br />Questions on media use history and media used the day before dream<br />Questions reflecting about dream reported<br />Dreams (N=152) for analysis were chosen if:<br />Last night<br />Rested (had typical amount of sleep)<br />
    16. 16. Principal Component Factor Analysis on Dream, Gamer and Media Use<br />Last night, rested dreams, N = 152<br />Dreams Self Labeled<br />Day Before Media Use<br />
    17. 17. Parallels video gaming/lucidity<br />Video game Play <br />video games technologically constructed alternative realities<br />Video gaming has been associated with improved spatial skills<br />Low motion sickness needed to play a lot<br />High absorption is reported by players<br />Lucid/control dreams<br />Dream worldsbiologically constructed alternative realities<br />Lucid dreamers show better spatial skills<br />Lucid dreamers have better vestibular systems (not susceptible to motion sickness)<br />Meditation is highly associated with lucidity and is training in developing one pointed absorption<br />
    18. 18. Is the Lucidity – Video Game Play Association Self Selection? <br />Yes<br />To be a serious player you need to not suffer motion sickness<br />For serious game play spatial skills are an advantage<br />Most games of serious players cater to boys<br />Those who are able to get absorbed should do better<br />No<br />Almost all children through to young adults play some form these days<br />Spatial skills improve with play<br />Girl games are being developed and is a large growing market<br />Attention/absorption improve with play<br />
    19. 19. Bottom Line<br />Gaming is too wide spread to reduce to purely self selection<br />There is increasing social pressure to play<br />Gaming is only one part of our networked life<br />Percent growth in US 2006-2007<br />
    20. 20. Original Dream Content Analysis<br /><ul><li>Hall &Van de Castle Coding System
    21. 21. Frequency equals intensity
    22. 22. High inter-rater reliability
    23. 23. Well developed norms
    24. 24. Uses categories which are pertinent to waking concerns that may influence dreaming.
    25. 25. Those that lead to further research were:
    26. 26. characters, aggression and misfortune.
    27. 27. Gackenbach, J.I., Matty, I., Kuruvilla, B., Samaha, A. N., Zederayko, A., Olischefski, J. & Von Stackelberg, H. (2009). Video game play: Waking and dreaming consciousness. S. Krippner (Ed.), Perchance To Dream, Hauppauge, NY: Nova Science Publishers, p. 239-253.</li></ul>27 gamers<br />56 dreams <br />male norms<br />
    28. 28. Significant Differences from Male Norms <br />More dead or imaginary characters appearing in dream reports (21% vs 0%).<br /> Why be human in a game? They have fewer powers than other types of creatures.<br />
    29. 29. Dead or Imaginary Characters<br />Subject 001- Dream 11<br />“I dreamt I was a character is Underworld 2, it was a werewolf character and then I became a 3rd person. It was the two main characters, it was the vampire girl and a hybrid werewolf character and I was another werewolf character beside them and we went into a vampire coven and we got to the weapons section of the vampire coven and then I woke up”<br /><ul><li>Later looked at bizarreness due to this finding</li></li></ul><li>Dream Aggression<br />Smaller number of dreams with aggression (32% vs 47%) <br />Yetmore intense aggression (namely physical aggression, 86% vs 50%) when it happened<br />
    30. 30. Dream Aggression Example<br />Subject 002- Dream 6<br /> “… I went outside … with my cat and shot these criminals that were trying to eat my dad and they were on top of my dad trying to eat his arms and he was fighting them off, and they were trying to hold him down and bite his shoulders and there was blood and stuff. And it was a very graphic shootout for a dream; it was very blood and guts ya know? And when I ran out of ammunition there was like pistol whipping and stuff going on and that one sticks out in my mind because it was very graphic…”.<br />
    31. 31. Dream Misfortunes<br />Fewer Misfortunes <br />(7% vs 36%)<br />Fewer Bodily Misfortunes<br />(0% vs 29%)<br />Aggression and misfortune findings lead to threat simulation and nightmare questions<br />Thus less victim /more control<br />
    32. 32. Dream Bizarreness<br />Gackenbach, J. I., Kuruvilla, B., & Dopko, R. (2009). Video game play and dream bizarreness. Dreaming, 19(4), 218-231. <br />Gackenbach, J.I. & Dopko, R. (in submission). The Relationship between Video Game Play, Dream Bizarreness, and Creativity. Consciousness and Cognition.<br />
    33. 33. Domhoff – 2007 meta-analysis<br />dreams are more coherent, patterned and thoughtful than previously suggested<br />still some bizarreness in adult dreams <br />far less than what was expected based<br />Illusion of Dream Bizarreness<br />
    34. 34. Methods<br />Study 1: Recent Dreams<br />Self reported dream questions<br />Various media use information<br />Study 2: Two Week Online Dream Diary<br />Features that were bizarre for subject<br />Various media use information<br />Torrance Test of Creative Thinking (TTCT)<br /> Verbal and the figural tests<br />Revonsuo & Salmivalli Content Analysis<br />
    35. 35. Unusual (subject)<br />Bizarre (judges)<br />Non-bizarre (judges)<br />Low Game Group<br />High Game Group<br />Covariates: sex, # words in dream, # hours of video game play day before dreamDreams were 279 from low end gamers and 162 from high end gamers<br />
    36. 36. Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking<br />No gamer group difference for verbal test<br />Significant differences for figural test favoring high gamer group<br />
    37. 37. Gaming, Bizarreness & Creativity<br />
    38. 38. Factor Analysis on Game Play, Lucid Related Dream & Bizarreness Variables<br />Gaming loads with and without lucidity-control but with lucidity-control you have bizarreness<br />Gackenbach, J.I. & Hunt, H. (2010, April). Video Game Play and Lucid Dreaming as Socially Constructed Meditative Absorption. Paper to be presented at the biannual meeting entitled "Toward a Science of Consciousness" sponsored by the University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona.<br />
    39. 39. Nightmares & Threat Simulation<br />Gackenbach, J.I. & Kuruvilla, B. (2008). The relationship between video game play and threat simulation dreams. Dreaming, 18(4), 236-256.<br />
    40. 40. Threat Simulation Theory<br />dreaming is an adaptive process with an evolutionary foundation (Revonsuo, 2000). <br />dreaming allows us to simulate threatening situations in the safety of a virtual environment of dreams. <br />continued practice would allow an individual to better prepare for these possibly dangerous instances, were they to arise in the waking world<br />
    41. 41. Dreams Collected<br />Online Questionnaires<br />night before dreams only, <br />average hours since dream to recollection being under one hour<br />minimum word count of 40 words <br />98 participants/dreams<br />35 males <br />63 females<br />
    42. 42. Principle Component Factor Analysis of Media, Threat Simulation Intensity, and Dream Self Evaluation Variables<br />Gaming<br />Day BeforeMedia Use<br />Threat Simulation<br />Self Report on Dream<br />
    43. 43. Nightmares versus Bad Dreams<br />Le, H. & Gackenbach, J. (2009). Nightmares of Video Game Players: What do They Look Like? Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Association for the Study of Dreams, Chicago, ILL.<br />
    44. 44. Method<br />Participants<br />231 low- and 222 high end gamers<br />Instruments<br />Media usage questionnaire<br />Impactful dreams questionnaire (Lucid, Nightmares, Mystical, and Bad dreams)<br />Content Analysis<br />Hall and Van de Castle’s method for content analysis (HVDC)<br />
    45. 45. HVDC Aggression Sum Score<br />Nightmares<br />Bad Dreams<br />Low Game Group<br />High Game Group<br />
    46. 46. HVDC Misfortune Sum Score<br />Bad Dreams<br />Nightmares<br />Low Game Group<br />High Game Group<br />
    47. 47. Judge Rated Emotionality (HVDC)<br />Consistent findings with previous research<br />Nightmares had more negative emotions than bad dreams<br />No interaction with gaming group<br />
    48. 48. Self-Rated Emotionality Scale of Dream<br />No gamer group difference or dream type difference<br />Self rated emotions: anger, awe, sexual arousal, anxiety, fear, guilt, frustration, sadness, hatred, happiness, jealousy, and embarrassment<br />Negative emotions (anxiety, frustration, and fear) were found to be higher in bad dreams for high-end gamers<br />While positive emotions (sexual arousal and happiness) were found to be greater in nightmares for high end gamers!!!<br />
    49. 49. Self Reported Emotions: Sample Subscales<br />Nightmares<br />Bad Dreams<br />Bad Dreams<br />Nightmares<br />Low Game Group<br />High Game Group<br />Low Game Group<br />High Game Group<br />Anxiety<br />Happiness<br />
    50. 50. Hall & Van de Castle Content Analysis of Lucid vsNonlucid Dreams of Gamers from 4 Previous Studies<br />Gackenbach, J.I. & Hunt, H. (2010, April). Video Game Play and Lucid Dreaming as Socially Constructed Meditative Absorption. Paper to be presented at the biannual meeting entitled "Toward a Science of Consciousness" sponsored by the University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona.<br />
    51. 51. Lucidity Dream Type Differences among Gamers<br />
    52. 52. Participant - Observer Gamer Opinion of how video games enter into dreams<br />Lucidity, bizarreness, yes.<br />Aggression, sometimes.<br />nightmares very rare<br />3rd person<br />“I’ve just noticed that sometimes I’m just there as a hovering spirit watching things go on and I don’t really have a role … I don’t even pop up in my dreams, it’s just like I’m watching a movie … I feel emotion definitely regardless of whether or not I’m the person involved” – s16<br />
    53. 53. Conclusions & Implications<br />Lucidity/control<br />Do these preliminary results imply that lucid/control dreaming will become widespread given the saturation of media?<br />Bizarreness<br />Are gamers semantic networks more diverse?<br />Aggression/Threat Simulation<br />Does gaming protect the person against nightmares?<br />
    54. 54. For more information....<br />Email for slides and/or papers:<br />gackenbachj@macewan.ca<br />Some of presentation summarized in this book chapter<br />Gackenbach, J.I., Kuruvilla, B., Dopko, R. & Le, H. (2010). Chapter 5: Dreams and video game play. In F. Columbus (Ed.), Computer Games: Learning Objectives, Cognitive Performance and Effects on Development, Hauppauge, NY: Nova Science Publishers.<br />
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