Electronic Commerce Research

, Volume 9, Issue 1–2, pp 3–26 | Cite as

Online gaming: a scoping study of massively multi-player online role playing games

  • Alex Meredith
  • Zaheer Hussain
  • Mark D. Griffiths


The popularity of Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games (MMORPGs) has risen greatly over the last few years. To date there has been very little published academic research concerning online gaming and even less on the different types of online games that exist. Given the lack of data, a scoping study was undertaken to examine the extent, range and nature of different MMORPGs. Data were collected relating to the twenty most popular MMORPGs. The primary aim was to present a summarised overview of all material reviewed. The secondary aim was to provide a thematic construction in order to present a narrative account of existing MMORPG literature. Overall, the scoping study found that whilst some games had received moderate, or even substantial attention, others have had no research conducted upon them at all. This presents a problem since the growth in both the player base and the industry suggests that a single psychological profile of ‘the gamer’ cannot be relied upon, and as such further research is required. It is hoped that this study suggests ways forward and helps set research agendas for future research into MMORPGs.


Massively multiplayer online games Scoping study 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alex Meredith
    • 1
  • Zaheer Hussain
    • 1
  • Mark D. Griffiths
    • 1
  1. 1.International Gaming Research Unit, Psychology Division, Department of Social SciencesNottingham Trent UniversityNottinghamUK

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