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Video Game Uses and Gratifications as Predictors of Use and Game Preference
Unformatted Document Text:  Video game U&G 20 learning, Social Learning theory (Bandura, 1977, 1994) provides a logical explanation of the effects of television. In fact, the storytelling nature of television is consistent with centuries old socialization mechanism of folklore (Levi-Strauss, 1995). However, it does not necessarily follow that the same would be true of video games, as has been hypothesized by video game researchers (e.g. (Calvert & Tan, 1994; Irwin & Gross, 1995). Instead, video games likely realize their primary effects in the realm of intellectual interactive puzzle solving. This may account for the lower effect sizes between media use and subsequent aggression found in video game research than in television research (Sherry, 2001a). Like television, different patterns of relationships exist between the gratifications of video game play and genres. In other words, various game types satisfy different needs for the users. Not surprisingly, playing for the challenge of beating the game was most strongly associated with Traditional games (e.g. Puzzles, Quiz/Trivia, etc.). These game types are more likely to be single player games that may take a long time to master. On the other hand, Traditional and Imagination games, which focus on solving intellectual puzzles, are not very stimulating. Instead, the high action Physical Enactment games such as Shooters and Fighters were most often played by individuals who enjoyed arousal. Imagination games, such as role playing games, are preferred by individuals who like to play games for Fantasy reasons (e.g., “I play video games because they let me do things I cannot do in real life”). Each game type is associated with a particular reason for playing. The pattern of relationships among the uses and the genres suggests that the generational cohort studied here has developed a set of reasons for using games that the genres offered. This pattern of uses is likely more purposeful and active than television use because of the costs involved in game play. In addition to owning a television set, gamers must invest approximately

Authors: Sherry, John. and Lucas, Kristen.
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Video game U&G 20
learning, Social Learning theory (Bandura, 1977, 1994) provides a logical explanation of the
effects of television. In fact, the storytelling nature of television is consistent with centuries old
socialization mechanism of folklore (Levi-Strauss, 1995). However, it does not necessarily
follow that the same would be true of video games, as has been hypothesized by video game
researchers (e.g. (Calvert & Tan, 1994; Irwin & Gross, 1995). Instead, video games likely
realize their primary effects in the realm of intellectual interactive puzzle solving. This may
account for the lower effect sizes between media use and subsequent aggression found in video
game research than in television research (Sherry, 2001a).
Like television, different patterns of relationships exist between the gratifications of video
game play and genres. In other words, various game types satisfy different needs for the users.
Not surprisingly, playing for the challenge of beating the game was most strongly associated with
Traditional games (e.g. Puzzles, Quiz/Trivia, etc.). These game types are more likely to be single
player games that may take a long time to master. On the other hand, Traditional and Imagination
games, which focus on solving intellectual puzzles, are not very stimulating. Instead, the high
action Physical Enactment games such as Shooters and Fighters were most often played by
individuals who enjoyed arousal. Imagination games, such as role playing games, are preferred
by individuals who like to play games for Fantasy reasons (e.g., “I play video games because they
let me do things I cannot do in real life”). Each game type is associated with a particular reason
for playing.
The pattern of relationships among the uses and the genres suggests that the generational
cohort studied here has developed a set of reasons for using games that the genres offered. This
pattern of uses is likely more purposeful and active than television use because of the costs
involved in game play. In addition to owning a television set, gamers must invest approximately


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