Keynote: The Journey To Content: Developing a model for understanding video game interactions

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


When we make games, we have many implicit understandings of what constitutes an interaction from a player and what constitutes their goal for playing; however, in trying to build a method of understanding a simple interaction (such as finding a key to open a gate) numerous limitations of our understanding were revealed. This talk presents Prof. Mata Haggis-Burridge’s and Thomas Buijtenweg’s development of a new model for understanding video games and interactive media: the Journey to Content. The approach looks at core structural elements of digital games and breaks them down into constituents that help us to understand the player, content, gates, and keys. This model presents an unusual and revealing insight into both the structure of existing games and the assumptions that are usually sublimated by creators. Unlike high-level analysis models, such as the MDA Framework and Bartle’s Taxonomy of Players, the Journey to Content model examines the moment-to-moment interactions of players within both the system of the game and their wider societal context. Early application of the concepts from the model have shown that it has practical use for designers, and that it has potential for stimulating new game concepts. The model also has implications for metrics analysis and study/development of interactive systems beyond games. The talk also contains information about four types of ‘immersion’ in video games: systems immersion, spatial immersion, social/empathic immersion, and narrative immersion. It is discussed how these four types can be impacted in a variety of positive and negative ways by an individual change to a game. These four types of immersion are then compared and combined with the Journey To Content model to reveal new research questions.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 19 Sep 2019
EventGAME-ON'2019 - Breda university of Applied Sciences, Breda, Netherlands
Duration: 18 Sep 201920 Sep 2019




  • journey to content
  • immersion
  • video games
  • design
  • fundamental
  • theory
  • model
  • game design
  • diversity
  • accessibility
  • key
  • gate
  • content
  • player


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