Our Virtual Bodies, Ourselves?
What do our virtual bodies say about us? More importantly, are certain people more likely to choose a particular kind of body type in the virtual world? In this article, we'll take a look at character height, attractiveness, and body types.
Let's start with character height. It's probably not surprising that when people can choose their height that they choose to be a little taller than average. This was marginally more so for men than for women. In the survey, I also asked players to self-report their actual height. To minimize players actively thinking about these two issues together, the two questions were asked a couple of pages apart and in the demographics and character body type sections respectively. What was interesting was that character height and actual height were positively correlated (r = .10 for women and .15 for men). In other words, people who pick tall characters tend to be taller in real life as well. While it appears that most people prefer to have taller characters in virtual worlds, the data shows that virtual height tends to mirror actual height (rather than compensating for being short in real life).
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