Abstract

Video game researchers have recently begun to explore qualitative techniques to understand video games and their audiences. Yet many questions remain concerning the significance of gaming media and how video game research should be conducted. This research addresses the changing focus of video game researchers from the "producers," or sender of the video game, to the "audience" or receiver. This is accomplished in the following ways: by exploring meanings created by individuals while "role-playing" in an electronic world as an on-screen video game avatar; by using the Zaltman metaphor elicitation technique (ZMET), to gather a deeper understanding of how players are interpreting the video game creators intended message, and focusing on the relationships formed between a player and their onscreen character. Using the ZMET method the author conducts ten in-depth interviews looking at the interviewees' relation with the Super Mario Bros avatar to gain an understanding of player-avatar relationships. Interviews are then discussed to describe how these individuals understand the video game message and avatar relationship.

Degree

MA

College and Department

Fine Arts and Communications; Communications

Rights

http://lib.byu.edu/about/copyright/

Date Submitted

2008-03-28

Document Type

Thesis

Handle

http://hdl.lib.byu.edu/1877/etd2358

Keywords

video games, Nintendo, Super Mario, presence, qualitative, ZMET, interview, role-playing, ludology, narratology, avatar

Included in

Communication Commons

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