The five most common types of GTP

In our latest study with over 2,000 self-selected participants 97% reported having experienced GTP at some point in their life. The most (95%) had experienced GTP more than once.

Altered visual perceptions 

The most commonly reported among the visual experiences were visualizing images or seeing images with closed eyes (77%).


Visualizing or seeing images with closed eyes from the game

77% Visualized/seen VG images with closed eyes

46% Misperceived RL objects as those in the game

36% Seen distorted environments and/or objects

31% Seen VG images with open eyes


Altered auditory perceptions

Hearing music from the game when not playing was the most commonly reported by participants in the auditory sub-modality (74%).


Hearing music from the game

74% Heard the music from a VG IRL

65% Heard a sound from a VG IRL

65% Misinterpreted sounds IRL as those from the VG

46% Heard a character’s voice from a VG IRL


Automatic thoughts

Thinking about using a video game element in real life was the most commonly type reported by the participants (75%) in the automatic thoughts modality. This type of experience usually happens as spontaneous thoughts but also occurred as mix-ups when gamers for moments actually think they can use video game elements to resolve real life situations.


Thinking about using something from a VG IRL

75% Thought about using something from a VG IRL

72% Wanted/felt the urge to do something IRL after seeing something that reminded of a VG

63% Still being in the mind-set of a VG

43% Mixed up VG events with actual RL events


Altered body perceptions

The most common GTP experienced related to body was to feel body movement as in the game (51%).


Illusion of body movement

51% Bodily sensations of movement as in a VG

49% Perceived time and/or body differently

41% Tactile touch sensation associated with a VG

29% Felt as though the mind has disconnected from the body


Behaviours and actions

Among the different behaviours investigated in the survey saying something involuntary with video game contents was the most commonly reported (58%). It is very common that gamers use slang and jokes that include video game commands, phrases, etc. Although, this experience measures only those cases where gamers voiced out loud something with game contents involuntarily.


Verbal outburst

58% Sang, shouted or said something from a VG IRL unintentionally

49% Unintentionally acted differently IRL because of something experienced in a VG

44% Reflex body reaction associated with a VG

40% Acted out a behaviour/activity influenced by a VG

GTP characteristics

  • Most GTP were short-lived (lasted seconds 59%, minutes 27%).
  • Most occurred after playing (directly after playing 42%, hours after 47%).
  • Occurred recurrently (66%), and usually while doing day-to-day activities (62%).
  • Occurred in a large variety of games. Most prevalent were role-playing (53%) and adventure games (54%).
  • 47% had no special feelings about their GTP, 26% had pleasant feelings, 21% wanted that GTP re-occurred, and 14% had felt confused.
  • 20% had been distressed or experienced dysfunction due to GTP.
  • 13% were under the influence of a substance (medicine, alcohol or drugs) when GTP occurred.

Here you can read the full published study.


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 June 3, 2016, in GTP study and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: