“Investigating the Affects of Music on Emotion in Games” by Moffat & Kiegler

  • N=15, Three random groups (N=5), 11 male, 4 female, aged between 18 and 26.
  • They were evaluating two Alan Wake trailers in the study with different types of music.
  • Study was about comparison of affects when viewing of the clip with different music (group1: silence, clip 1, and fearful, clip 2; g2 sad and aggressive; g3: happy and fearful).
  • Participants labeled their affects and study indicates that background music influenced labeling in statistically significantly.
  • Skin conductivity,heart rate, and pupil-range indications measured corresponded to the reported affects.
  • Study was also addressing to the question whether music influenced player’s thinking: especially aggressive music made participant infer situation differently (question used here was something like: “Alan Wake have gun in his coat pocket, agree-disagree).
  • They state: “An inappropriate piece of music can kill the experience for the player”, which seem intuitively correct.
  • However, the study does not address whether playing the game would change the results; there might be differences between concentrating on clip and concentrating on making decisions (especially if cognitive load of playing is high).

Moffat & Kiegler. 2006. Investigating the Affects of Music on Emotion in Games. Presented at Audio Mostly Games, Piteaå, Sweden (October 11 – 12). Available http://wood.tii.se/sonic/images/stories/amc06/amc_proceedings_low.pdf.

Published by lankoski

Petri Lankoski, D.Arts, is a Associate Professor in Game Studies at the school of Communication, Media and IT at the Södertörn University, Sweden. His research focuses on game design, game characters, role-playing, and playing experience. Petri has been concentrating on single-player video games but researched also (multi-player) pnp and live-action role-playing games. This blog focuses on his research on games and related things.

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