Customised avatars are a powerful tool to increase identification, engagement and intrinsic motivation in digital games. We investigated the effects of customisation in a self-competitive VR exergame by modelling players and their previous performance in the game with customised avatars. In a first study we found that, similar to non-exertion games, customisation significantly increased identification and intrinsic motivation, as well as physical performance in the exergame. In a second study we identified a more complex relationship with the customisation style: idealised avatars increased wishful identification but decreased exergame performance compared to realistic avatars. In a third study, we found that 'enhancing' realistic avatars with idealised characteristics increased wishful identification, but did not have any adverse effects. We discuss the findings based on feedforward and self-determination theory, proposing notions of intrinsic identification (fostering a sense of self) and extrinsic identification (drawing away from the self) to explain the results.
|Title of host publication||Proceedings of the 2020 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems|
|Place of Publication||New York, USA|
|Publisher||Association for Computing Machinery|
|Number of pages||16|
|Publication status||Accepted/In press - 16 Jan 2020|
|Name||CHI Conference on Human Factors and Computing Systems|
Koulouris, J., Jeffery, Z., Best, J., O'Neill, E., & Lutteroth, C. (Accepted/In press). Me vs. Super(wo)man: Effects of Customization and Identification in a VR Exergame. In Proceedings of the 2020 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (Vol. 2020-April, pp. 1-16). (CHI Conference on Human Factors and Computing Systems). New York, USA: Association for Computing Machinery.