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Developing a Triangulation System for Digital Game Events, Observational Video, and Psychophysiological Data to Study Emotional Responses to a Virtual Character

J. Matias Kivikangas, Lennart E. Nacke, and Niklas Ravaja. 2011. Developing a Triangulation System for Digital Game Events, Observational Video, and Psychophysiological Data to Study Emotional Responses to a Virtual Character. In Entertainment Computing 2, 1: 11-16. Elsevier. doi:10.1016/j.entcom.2011.03.006

Abstract

Game researchers are currently lacking comprehensive data analysis tools that triangulate game events, event-related survey data, and psychophysiological data. Such a tool would allow a comprehensive analysis of player engagement in digital games. The development of this tool was motivated by an experimental psychology study that asked whether emotional reactions to congruent and incongruent emotional stimuli within an intrinsically motivated game task are the same as within the traditional experimental picture-viewing paradigm. To address the needs of our study, we used the Source SDK (Valve Corporation) for creating a system that automates event logging, video management psychophysiological data markup. The system also allowed recording of self-report measures at individual play events without interrupting the game activity.