Animating a Plausible Past: Perceived Realism and Sense of Place Influence Entertainment of and Tourism Intentions From Historical Video Games

Nicholas David Bowman, Alexander Vandewalle, Rowan Daneels, Yoon Lee, Siyang Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Historical video games set in famous places in the world history have grown in popularity. The current study extends prior work in analyzing how social realism (a dimension of perceived realism focused on regarding game characters and events as authentic) is related to entertainment outcomes, assessing the extent to which sense of place further contributes to these outcomes, and examining how these experiences encourage tourism. As an internal replication, we surveyed international fans of the Assassin's Creed franchise about their experiences with one of four different games set in modern history (Unity, Syndicate) or antiquity (Origins, Odyssey). For modern historical games, increased social realism was correlated with enjoyment and increased sense of place was correlated with appreciation. For all games, sense of place was positively associated with tourism intentions. These findings are discussed in relation to the role of perceived realism in the experience and influence of playing historical video games.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)286-308
Number of pages23
JournalGames and Culture
Volume19
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2024

Keywords

  • historical video games
  • perceived realism
  • replication
  • sense of place
  • tourism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Communication
  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Human-Computer Interaction

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