Players' Expertise and Competition with Others Shape the Satisfaction of Competence Needs, Gaming Gratifications, and Contingent Self-Esteem in a Gaming Context

Year of publication: 2013
Author(s): Kazakova, S.; Cauberghe, V.; De Pelsmacker, P. & Pandelaere, M.
Appeared in: Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking


The current study explores how competition and gaming expertise affect the satisfaction of competence needs and gaming gratifications. We demonstrate that competition moderates the effect of gaming expertise on the satisfaction of competence needs, which in turn affects game enjoyment and replay intention. Gaming expertise predicted players’ need satisfaction, game enjoyment and replay intention significantly better in a competitive compared to a non-competitive context. The effect of gaming expertise on game enjoyment and replay intention was, furthermore, mediated by the satisfaction of competence needs. Finally, gaming expertise positively affected the importance of competition for players’ self-esteem only in the competitive gaming context. The present findings demonstrate the importance of competition and gaming expertise for the satisfaction of competence needs, gaming gratifications and the pursuit of self-esteem during gameplay, attesting to the applicability of self-determination theory to gaming contexts.

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