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Cyberpsychol Behav Soc Netw. 2010 Oct;13(5):567-70. doi: 10.1089/cyber.2009.0243. Epub 2010 Feb 22.

"I feel more connected to the physically ideal mini me than the mirror-image mini me": theoretical implications of the "malleable self" for speculations on the effects of avatar creation on avatar-self connection in Wii.

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  • Department of Communication, Boston College, 140 Commonwealth Ave, 21 Campanella Way 544, Chestnut Hill, MA 02467, USA. seunga.jin.1@bc.edu


What are the impacts of creating an avatar replicating the actual self versus an avatar projecting the ideal self on game players' avatar-self connection? This study leveraged an avatar-creating game (Mii Channel) within a video-game console (Wii) in a controlled, randomized study. The results of a two-group comparison (actual self-priming vs. ideal self-priming) between-subjects study (Nā€‰=ā€‰76) demonstrated the significant main effect of self-priming via avatar (Mii) creation on avatar-self connection. Game players who were primed to create a Mii reflecting the ideal self felt greater avatar-self connection than those primed to create a replica Mii mirroring the actual self. Theoretical values and implications for a burgeoning body of research on the "malleable self" and the multidimensionality of the self-concept in avatar-based interactive media are discussed.

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