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Psychology of Video Games Podcast
53 minutes | Jul 1, 2021
Podcast 69: Game Transfer Phenomenon
Ever seen or heard something from a video game while you weren't playing? Ever had an urge to climb a building or select from a dialogue wheel hours after you pushed away from the keyboard or controller? In this episode, I talk with my guest expert about these kinds of "game transfer phenomena" and their implications.
54 minutes | May 1, 2021
Podcast 68: Convention Fandom
My guest expert and I talk about the psychology behind geek fandom conventions, how people behave at cons, and how Covid has changed them.
60 minutes | Mar 4, 2021
Podcast 67: Esports Performance Consulting
How can psychologists help esports athletes improve, stay healthy, and thrive? I talk to a guest expert with a background in sports psychology and other areas who is doing just that.
57 minutes | Jan 10, 2021
Episode 66 - Procedural Rhetoric
When games have a message that they try to convey through systems and gameplay, do players listen? Do they hear what the designers expect? Does anything tend to change as a result?Audio Credits:“Robot Motivation” by The Polish Ambassador, licensed under Creative Commons: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 http://freemusicarchive.org/music/The_Polish_Ambassador/Diplomatic_Immunity/05_Robot_MotivationSatisfactory Dev Highlight Music by Sleeper's Delight https://soundcloud.com/sleepersdelight/satisfactory-dev-highlight-music
87 minutes | Dec 2, 2020
Episode 65 - Psych of Final Fantasy
I talk with authors of the new book Surpassing The Limit Break: The Psychology of Final Fantasy. About, well, THAT. Topics like the psychology behind Final Fantasy's storytelling, its use of gender subtypes, how its music enhances our enjoyment, how we develop attachments to characters, and how the game makes use of fundamental psychological drives.Audio Credits:“Robot Motivation” by The Polish Ambassador, licensed under Creative Commons: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0Gymnopedie No. 1 by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/3837-gymnopedie-no-1 License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
64 minutes | Nov 1, 2020
Episode 64 - How Can Video Games Make Us Happy?
Video games sometimes have an image problem. Honestly some days it feels like one black eye after another. But, let's not lose sight of the good stuff. There's plenty of evidence to suggest that video games help people and make our lives better. They create scaffolds on which we can build social support. They motivate us to improve. They get us into healthy mindsets around problem-solving, developing new skills, and cooperating with others. And a lot more. In this episode, I talk with my guest expert Dr. Ryan Kelly about the overlap between video games and positive psychology.
60 minutes | Sep 1, 2020
Episode 63 - Loss Aversion
Loss aversion refers to the fact that we feel more pain from a loss than we do pleasure from an equivalent gain. Losses are worse than gains are good. Most of the time game designers want to avoid triggering this feeling, but not always. I talk with my guest expert this episode about how game designers can incorporate --or not-- loss aversion into their game design. In fact, he wrote a book about it!Audio Credits: “Robot Motivation” by The Polish Ambassador, licensed under Creative Commons: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 Despair Creation by Max Lija, Othercide OST (https://www.maxlilja.com/)
63 minutes | Aug 1, 2020
Episode 62 - The Psychology of Trolling
Why do people troll other players in video games? Do they get something out of it or are they just "broken"? A lot of us like to think the latter, but some researchers are starting to investigate exactly why people troll in video games and in general. Links: https://twitter.com/christinelcookl https://socialinteractionlab.com/ Audio Credits:“Robot Motivation” by The Polish Ambassador, licensed under Creative Commons: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0Hitman by Kevin MacLeod. Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/3880-hitman License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ Children Laughing Sound by Mike Koenig http://soundbible.com/1848-Children-Laughing.html
59 minutes | Jul 1, 2020
Episode 61: Twitch Donations
What kind of relationships exist between Twitch streamers and their audience members? How is it different from other kinds of online relationships? And why do people offer monetary support to streamers? Why do some streamers get more donations than others? Is it because they're super hot? Do they do a good job of making lonely people feel included? Do they do something to make their audience members feel like they're just two friends hanging out online? Put another way: If you were a Twitch streamer, what lessons could you draw from the research that has been done about all this?These are the kinds of questions that I will investigate and answer with the help of this episode's guest expert.
63 minutes | Jun 1, 2020
Episode 60: Take This (dot org)
I mean, wouldn't it be nice if there were organizations out there that were dedicated to helping people in the gaming communities cope, be healthy, and get the help they need? Wouldn't it be great if there were someone offering aid in our quest to get through life healthy, happy, well prepared? Well, I'm going to talk to someone from one such organization that has adopted the mission to do just that. “Robot Motivation” by The Polish Ambassador, licensed under Creative Commons: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0One Sly Move by Kevin MacLeod. Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/5759-blippy-trance License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
58 minutes | May 1, 2020
Episode 59: What is a Games Researcher?
People with psychology degrees fill a lot of roles in the gaming industry, including researchers working within a game development company. I talk to one such researcher who works at Riot Games, maker of League of Legends and Valorant, about what she does, how she got where she is, and what advice she has for those interested in charting a similar course.“Robot Motivation” by The Polish Ambassador, licensed under Creative Commons: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0Blippy Trance by Kevin MacLeod. Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/5759-blippy-trance License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
48 minutes | Apr 1, 2020
Episode 58 - The Economics of Online Games
Just as video games can provide great examples of concepts from psychology, they can also illustrate concepts from neighboring fields. Like economics! In this episode, my guest expert walks us through his adventures in using basic knowledge of economics to wreak havoc (and have fun) in a massively multiplayer online game. And what kinds of issues designers of these kinds of games have to take into consideration.
57 minutes | Mar 1, 2020
Episode 57 - Mental Models in League of Legends
Mental models are representations that help people understand and predict systems or situations such as a match in a competitive game. My guest expert this episode reports on his research into understanding the differences between the mental models of League of Legends players at different levels of expertise and accomplishment. Can understanding how these mental models are structured and developed help players become better and suggest ways that game designers can facilitate such development?
48 minutes | Feb 2, 2020
Episode 56 - Game to Grow
How therapeutic Dungeons & Dragons sessions are reaching people who need help in an engaging way.
61 minutes | Jan 4, 2020
Podcast 55 - Psychology of Level Design
What are some of the ways that video game level designers look to psychology for helping players can navigate, move through, and make sense of their virtual worlds?
49 minutes | Dec 1, 2019
Podcast 54 - Sexualization in Games
Should you expect playing as a sexually objectified avatar like Lara Croft to impact women's attitudes towards their own bodies or to create other harmful attitudes? My guests this episode engaged in what they called "adversarial collaboration" to run a study and find out. One didn't think they would find an effect from playing as Mrs. Croft. The other did. Find out who was right.
54 minutes | Nov 1, 2019
Podcast 53 - Online Relationships (Rebroadcast)
Are friendships and other relationships formed in online games substitutes for offline relationships? Are they better?
59 minutes | Oct 2, 2019
Podcast 52 - Being Indistractable
Welcome to part two of this two part miniseries on Psychology of Games summer reading. In this episode I talk with author and consultant Nir Eyal about how to use psychology and other methods to avoid being distracted by video games and other technology when you don't want to be. It's all in his new book, Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life, available now.Nir discusses the psychology behind distraction and its opposite, which he calls "traction." Along with this, we talk about specific strategies for getting more traction and when it's okay to be distracted by video games, social media, and other technology.
68 minutes | Sep 7, 2019
Podcast 51: Lost in a Good Game
Psychology of Games Summer Book Club begins with an interview with Dr. Pete Etchells, author of the newly released Lost in a Good Game.
67 minutes | Aug 3, 2019
Podcast 50 - Moral Choices in Games vs. Other Media
My guest experts and I discuss how moral choices in video games are different from other media and what makes them so difficult. We also discuss some of our favorite and most compelling choices from games.
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