DiGRA '18 - Proceedings of the 2018 DiGRA International Conference: The Game is the Message
DiGRA, July, 2018
This paper will explore the borders between the avatar and character dimensions of the player figure, as outlined by Vella (2015), particularly in cases where this line is blurred. Through investigation of five different examples, I suggest we use the measures of avatar control and character complexity to study the relationship between avatar and character in a given instance. Avatar control refers to the amount of agency the player has in a given instance in a game compared to the default mode of agency, whereas character complexity builds on transmedia and literary theory approaches to characters, to explore what constitutes complexity of the character in question. The analysis allows us to assess whether the instance can be considered representing either character autonomy or automated avatar actions, and in turn may help us understand the relationship between the player, the avatar, and the character.