Open Access Journal

ISSN: 2183-2439

Article | Open Access

(A)morally Demanding Game? An Exploration of Moral Decision-Making in a Purpose-Made Video Game

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Abstract:  A purpose-made video game was used to measure response time and moral alignment of in-game moral decisions, which were made by 115 undergraduate students. Overall, moral decisions took between 4–6 seconds and were mostly pro-social. Previous gameplay, in-game, and post-game experiences predicted in-game moral alignment. Real-life moral salience was not related to in-game decision-making. The implications of these results are discussed in the context of the demands of video games and in-game moral decision-making models.

Keywords:  decision-making; digital games; moral foundations theory; morality; purpose-made games; video games



© Sarah E. Hodge, Jacqui Taylor, John McAlaney. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (, which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.