As multiplayer games evolve in functionality and with respect to the number of participants, in-game communication between players is increasing. As in-game communication increases, games may be considered the natural medium for computer based communication in general. Special issues may arise due to the real-time nature of many games, as intraplayer communication must not interfere with other parts of the gameplay. To obtain information on the extent to which computer based chat is spontaneously associated with multiplayer games, an empirical study was conducted. Children from age 10 to age 15 were interviewed about their computer based communications. To ensure unbiased results, game related issues were never brought up by the interviewer. Results show that multiplayer games were spontaneously pinpointed by 16.83% of the interview subjects being asked about their computer chat habits. Positive remarks dominated, but some negative aspects were also mentioned, such as difficulty chatting and playing simultaneously.
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