Virtual Economics: Applying Economics to the Study of Game Worlds

Proceedings of the 2005 Conference on Future Play (Future Play 2005), Lansing, MI, October 13-15, 2005

6 Pages Posted: 27 Jun 2010

See all articles by Vili Lehdonvirta

Vili Lehdonvirta

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute

Date Written: October 13, 2005

Abstract

Complex computer games, especially massively multiplayer online games, contain narrative and mechanisms that mimic real economic activities, such as production, trade, and consumption. This has prompted some scholars to apply concepts and techniques from economics to study the complicated interactions inside games worlds. In this paper I review their work, attempt to argue why the approach has merit, and examine its limits and possibilities. In the final part I suggest a possible new avenue, using transaction cost economics to analyse and influence the size and composition of player guilds.

Keywords: virtual economy, virtual currency, virtual goods, virtual world, MMO, MMORPG

Suggested Citation

Lehdonvirta, Vili, Virtual Economics: Applying Economics to the Study of Game Worlds (October 13, 2005). Proceedings of the 2005 Conference on Future Play (Future Play 2005), Lansing, MI, October 13-15, 2005, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1630302

Vili Lehdonvirta (Contact Author)

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute ( email )

1 St. Giles
University of Oxford
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX1 3JS
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.oii.ox.ac.uk

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