Understanding Playful User Experience Through Digital Games
It has been commonly acknowledged that the acceptance of a product depends on both its utilitarian and non-utilitarian properties. The non-utilitarian properties can elicit generally pleasurable and particularly playful experiences in the product’s users. Product design needs to improve the support of playful experiences in order to fit in with the users’ multi-faceted needs. However, designing for fun and pleasure is not an easy task, and there is an urgent need in user experience research and design practices to better understand the role of playfulness in overall user experience of the product. In this paper, we present an initial framework of playful experiences which are derived from studies in interactive art and videogames. We conducted a user study to verify that these experiences are valid. We interviewed 13 videogame players about their experiences with games and what triggers these experiences. The results indicate that the players are experiencing the videogames in many different ways which can be categorized using the framework. We propose that the framework could help the design of interactive products from an experience point of view and make them more engaging, attractive, and most importantly, more playful for the users.