Avatar Identities and Climate Change Action in Video Games : Analysis of Mitigation and Adaptation Practices
Fernández Galeote, Daniel; Legaki, Nikoletta Zampeta; Hamari, Juho (2022-04-29)
Fernández Galeote, Daniel
Legaki, Nikoletta Zampeta
Association for Computing Machinery
Julkaisun pysyvä osoite on
Games are considered promising for engaging people with climate change. In virtual worlds, players can adopt empowering roles to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions and/or adapt to climate impacts. However, the lack of a comprehensive exploration of existing climate-related identities and actions prevents understanding their potential. Here, we analyze 80 video games and classify avatar identities, or expected player roles, into six types. Climate selves encourage direct life changes; climate citizens are easy to identify with and imitate; climate heroes are inspirational figures upholding environmental values; empowered individuals deliberate to avoid a tragedy of the commons; authorities should consider stakeholders and the environment; and faction leaders engage in bi- or multilateral relations. Adaptation is often for decision-making profiles, while empowered individuals, authorities, and faction leaders usually face conflicting objectives. We discuss our results in relation to avatar research and provide suggestions for researchers, designers, and educators.
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