• Esben Lund-Pedersen
  • Steffen Titken Haferbier
4. term, Interactive Digital Media, Master (Master Programme)
The purpose of this MA-thesis is to investigate the topic of motivation in regards to computer games, and how motivation can be connected to the fundamental psychological needs, we as humans have. Furthermore, the goal of this MA-thesis is to gain a better understanding of what humans find funny in computer games and how it influences player motivation and the design of computer games.

The MA-thesis is divided into three main parts: the first part concerns the pre-understandings and knowledge accumulated through previous works relevant for this MA-thesis, along with a speculation of what the term "fun" means in regards to computer games. This speculation is supported with knowledge about theories which can be connected to the value of a gaming activity. Prior to the problem definition, the theoretical perspectives, in terms of phenomenology, will be included along with knowledge of the definition of a computer game. Additionally, the gaming activity and quality of this will be viewed through Mihaly Csikszenthmihalyis flow theory.

The second part of the thesis deals with theories of player motivation, psychological needs and feelings in computer games. These theoretical fields will be presented and used in the analysis of two existing computer in an attempt to categorize and discuss the game mechanics and quality of the content, which can lead to the understanding of the connection between fun in computer games and satisfaction of basic psychological needs.

In the last part of the thesis, the results of the analysis are presented and a model of the relationship between the psychological needs, player motivators and game mechanics is created. The purpose of the model is to contribute to the understanding of the incentive to play computer games, as well as to serve as a tool for how you, in the design of a computer game, can discuss the game mechanics involved and how they affect the player's gaming experience.
Publication date3 Sept 2013
Number of pages86
ID: 80585536