This study examined the effects of graphic realism and geographic proximity in newsgames. In a 2 (realism: high vs. low) × 2 (proximity: high vs. low) experiment, 161 participants played a modded newsgame. Suspense fully mediated the interaction effects of realism and proximity on willingness to help (the intention of newsgame forwarding and the amount donated). Realism indirectly affected newsgame forwarding through appreciation and led to negative emotion and higher arousal. Realism and proximity did not affect players’ knowledge gained from game play, enjoyment, or subsequent reading of related news. Players underwent both hedonic and eudaimonic appraisals through the newsgames.
- graphic realism
- issue proximity