Impacts of real-world need satisfaction on online gamer loyalty: Perspective of self-affirmation theory

Gen Yih Liao, Thi Tuan Linh Pham, T. C.E. Cheng, Ching I. Teng

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Online games are known for fulfilling computer users' various needs. However, little is known about whether real-world need satisfaction (not gaming satisfaction) motivates users to play online games. Grounded in self-affirmation theory (SAT), we develop a framework and formulate hypotheses to explain how aspects of real-world need satisfaction affect online gamer loyalty. We collect 1965 valid responses using an online survey and apply structural equation modelling for hypothesis testing. We find that competence need satisfaction and relatedness need satisfaction are positively related to self-worth, which is, in turn, positively related to online gamer loyalty. Our study is the first introducing self-worth to explain online gamer loyalty. Our findings inform online game providers that they could remind users of their real-world achievements and relations, elevating their perceptions of real-world need satisfaction, so lifting gamers’ self-worth and loyalty.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-100
Number of pages10
JournalComputers in Human Behavior
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2020


  • Loyalty
  • need satisfaction
  • Online game
  • Self-affirmation
  • self-worth
  • Structural equation modeling
  • Survey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Psychology(all)

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