Controlling spontaneous visuals from video games


Gamers have reported a variety of visual Game Transfer Phenomena experiences. These include perceptual distortions of objects or environments, mind visualizations and pseudo-hallucinations where gamers have seen images from the game floating in the back of their eyelids or in front of their eyes.

Interestingly, while many gamers have simply seen the video game images either static or in movement, others claim they have even replayed full game sessions in their mind.

Also, some gamers said they could induce perceptual distortions based on elements from the game.

Being able to control visual sensory information that arise spontaneously, usually without our awareness more than deliberately imagining or visualizing video game segments is very challenging.

According to research, hypnagogic visual hallucinations (when images are seen at sleep onset) disappear when the individual tries to control the images. However, can visuospatial skills (e.g. mental rotation) and visual memory typically attributed to frequently playing video games contribute to exercise some control over the images?

I wonder to what degree gamers can actually control their visual experiences?

The control can include prolonging the duration of visuals, moving the images, replaying the game, and inducing the images.

It is important to make clear that there is a difference between imagining the video game images than experiencing the sensation of seeing coloured afterimages and shapes in the back of the eyelids.

If you look at a bright lamp for a short period, you will get an afterimage. You can also easily see a negative afterimage (with opposite colour) by looking at the cross in the centre of the image below.


Further readings

Ortiz de Gortari, A. B., & Griffiths, M. D. (2014a). Altered visual perception in Game Transfer Phenomena: An empirical self-report study. International Journal of Human-Computer Interaction, 30(2), 95-105.
Ortiz de Gortari, A. B., Aronsson, K., & Griffiths, M. D. (2011). Game Transfer Phenomena in video game playing: A qualitative interview study. International Journal of Cyber Behavior, Psychology and Learning 1(3), 15-33.


About Angelica B. Ortiz de Gortari

Dr. Angelica B. Ortiz de Gortari is Marie Curie Postdoctoral Research fellow in Cyberpsychology. Critical inquiry on the psychosocial implications of interactive media technologies has been her professional passion since undergraduate school, when she conducted one of the first studies on internet addiction. Game Transfer Phenomena (GTP) is her area of research expertise, for which she has won awards. Dr. Ortiz de Gortari’s research has been featured in different media worldwide including Discovery News, History Channel News, BBC World Service, the New Scientist and the International Herald Tribune. Her research on GTP has even inspired an episode of the TV series CSI: Cyber. She has published academically and presented at several international conferences. The goal of her research is maximizing the psychological and social benefits of interactive virtual technologies while reducing the potential risks it can present to some individuals.

Posted on November 24, 2015, in GTP Adventures, Poll, Reflections and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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