More than just ‘XP’: learning social skills in massively multiplayer online games

Nicolas Ducheneaut (Palo Alto Research Center (PARC), 3333 Coyote Hill Road, Palo Alto, CA 94304, USA)
Robert J. Moore (Palo Alto Research Center (PARC), 3333 Coyote Hill Road, Palo Alto, CA 94304, USA)

Interactive Technology and Smart Education

ISSN: 1741-5659

Publication date: 31 May 2005

Abstract

Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games (MMORPGs) have become complex social worlds. As such, playing these games requires more than accomplishing simple objectives: it is also a process of socialization into a community of gamers. Through our observation of players’ activities we describe how MMORPGs provide opportunities for learning social skills such as: how to meet people; how to manage a small group; how to coordinate and cooperate with people; and how to participate in sociable interaction with them. We show how this social learning is tied to three important types of social interaction that are characteristic of MMORPGs: players’ self‐organization, instrumental coordination, and downtime sociability. We conclude by discussing the societal impacts of our findings and how the features of MMORPGs could be repurposed in environments specifically designed for social learning.

Keywords

Citation

Ducheneaut, N. and Moore, R. (2005), "More than just ‘XP’: learning social skills in massively multiplayer online games", Interactive Technology and Smart Education, Vol. 2 No. 2, pp. 89-100. https://doi.org/10.1108/17415650580000035

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2005, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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