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Title: The value of virtual game items : a review of purchase motivations in free-to-play games
Authors: Chong, Denise Hui Ching
Ho, Shaun Yan Liang
Keywords: DRNTU::Social sciences::Psychology
Issue Date: 2019
Abstract: The free-to-play (FTP) games sector has observed a considerable growth in recent years amidst a boom in the online gaming industry. As opposed to subscription-based games, the basic gaming platform is provided for free in FTP games, while players can choose to purchase virtual game items to enhance their gaming experience. Through an examination of attributes that virtual game items possess, this paper explains why certain players spend real money on virtual game items. Specifically, the economic value, and consumption values including the (1) functional value, (2) conditional value, (3) emotional value, (4) epistemic value, and (5) social value of virtual game items are discussed. Various strategies that game developers implement to monetise on these values are also discussed. Finally, we show that the consumption values of virtual game items interact in several complementary and conflicting ways, and suggest other perspectives in which purchase motivations among FTP game players can be examined in future studies. This paper aims to help FTP game developers improve the sustainability of their services by providing important insights on how players may value virtual game items.
Schools: School of Social Sciences 
Rights: Nanyang Technological University
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:SSS Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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