A5. Build on Real-World Knowledge

“Objects in the virtual world act like I expect them to, whether because I’ve encountered them before in the physical world or in other virtual worlds. This familiarity helps me ease into and be immersed in the virtual world.”

Knowledge transfer from the real world or other virtual world experiences to the virtual world helps players understand how to interact with the game. It helps players to correctly interact with the game world when virtual objects meet the users’ expectations of behaviors and affordances (such as pushing a door open, or pulling a lever). When a player has learned how to a VR controller in one game, they can easily use it in another game, as long as the controls are mapped to similar actions.

Virtual objects that look like real-world objects meet player expectations of behavior and affordances; a virtual chest of drawers, for instance, allows players to open and close individual drawers by pushing and pulling. This permits knowledge transfer from the real world to the virtual world, reducing the barrier to entry for new players by allowing them to lean on knowledge they already have. It can also be a source of surprise and delight for players when they experimentally try an action they aren’t sure will work and find that it does.

Examples (adhered):

  • The London Heist: While the player is in the car, he is able to interact with different elements in the car. For example, the player grabs a soda drink and brings it to his headset. He then hears the sound of sipping and gulping. He also reaches toward the radio and is able to turn the dial to switch the music. Both objects behave how he expects them to.
  • Job Simulator: The player is delighted to see that the copy machine works how he expects it to based on his understanding of how copy machines work in the real world. He puts his hand on the copy machine, and a copy of his hand comes out. While he’s interacting with the copy machine, he says, “Does this actually work? That’d be amazing if it actually worked. Oh my god.. What?! It actually works!”
  • Rockband VR: In the quick-play mode, the player leans forward near the microphone to sing in it and is happy that the microphone works how he expected it to. He can hear his voice in the speakers behind him and notices that his voice also becomes louder and more “echoey”.

Examples (violated):

  • John Wick Chronicles: The player expected to be able to close the briefcase, as he would be able to in real life, but his attempt at interacting with it did not cause anything to happen.
  • Minecraft VR: The player expected his hearing to be muffled when he is underwater, but the sound does not change.