By Ron Tamborini, Nicholas David Bowman, Allison Eden, Matthew Grizzard, & Ashley Organ
Published in Journal of Communications, 60, 758–777. doi: 10.1111/j.1460-2466.2010.01513.x
ABSTRACT: This article presents a model of enjoyment rooted in self-determination theory (Deci & Ryan, 1985) that includes the satisfaction of three needs related to psychological well-being: autonomy, competence, and relatedness. In an experiment designed to validate this conceptualization of enjoyment, we manipulate video game characteristics related to the satisfaction of these needs and examine their relative effects on enjoyment. The validated model explains 51% of the variance in enjoyment, even without including needs usually studied in relation to enjoyment such as pleasure seeking. Results indicate the utility of defining enjoyment as need satisfaction. These results are discussed in terms of a broader conceptualization of enjoyment represented as the satisfaction of a comprehensive set of functional needs.