MMO: More Flow Than The Rest

So after reading all multiple sources on Immersion, Flow and Agency whilst doing my Textual Analysis, I decided to thought more in depth about game genre and wether certain types provide more of an Immersive experience than others. I came to an antiquated conclusion that MMO’s are a more Immersive game type than any other, and these are a few reasons of why I believe that.

1) Characters.
The use of characters and opponents can really define a difference in Immersive gaming. I read some great scholarly resources that described how characters that are bound in specific ‘scripts’ can remind a gamer that the world is a representation. If characters repeat dialogue, use movements that don’t flow with the narrative or just overall seem to be bound in their script of being, then it can break immersion. I would argue that having multiple players within the game world, that are fully controlled by humans, add that ‘unpredictable’ dimension of being. You don’t know how they will react, what they will do next, and there isn’t that repetitive element that game characters live within. It’s like talking to a robot, rather then a fluid personality, and that breaks Immersion.

2) The Perspective
It was mentioned in two of my resources that although people assume First Person Shooters are a more Immersive perspective (because the characters point of view is through their eyes) that in-fact third person view provides a more immersive point of view. The problem with First person View is that the opportunity to feel presence right behind you, or to see in your peripherals is limited by the focus of the First Person Mode. The vision size is quite tight, and you have to fully turn the body to see whats there or near. Whereas with the Third Person view, there is a larger range of view, and a wider angle to which the player can see. You can see people behind your character and in a full 270 degree angle of the characters surroundings (this is closer to human sight then 180%), so in saying that, I would argue that the game view encourages a more Immersive experience than other games.

3) The ability to speak.
I think by using equipment to enable player-to-player verbal interaction their is a definite increase in the immersive experience. I feel that being able to speak, and be spoken to within a game reflect a more ‘real-world’ experience than to not. I believe that most situations require discussion and in that way, the need for tools of discussion within playing is paramount, in achieving Immersion or Flow.

I think MMO’s are a great leap forward for that realistic gaming experience. I believe to attain Immersion, you need to in ways attempt to mimic realistic situations and realistic interactional techniques.


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