Exploring Multiplayer Gaming Habits in Response to COVID-19

Date of Award

Spring 2021

Document Type




First Advisor

Rebecca Overmyer-Velazquez


From the earliest introduction of multiplayer video games, players have formed communities around those games based on the play mechanics and intended audience. The largest and one of the oldest examples of this is the community surrounding the game World of Warcraft(WoW). For the most part the gaming community has remained consistent with the foundation set by WoW players, but with the introduction of COVID-19 and the worldwide quarantines put in place, many people who had not previously been active in multiplayer game communities were given the chance to join. This research aims to discover how gaming habits of participants have been altered by the quarantine and whether new participants were brought into the gaming community as a result of the quarantine. The research used an online survey distributed through social media to users who have participated in the game Animal Crossing: New Horizons. A total of 34 participants were surveyed from gaming-focused discord servers and the Animal Crossing section of Tumblr. Participants were asked to fill out an anonymous survey that asked questions about their past and current gaming history. This research found that of the participants surveyed, the participants who had not been active in similar game communities before quarantine were more likely to take part in the trading and social communities of Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

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