From Elite Wiki

Immersion occurs when the gamer’s point of view is shifted to be within the game world.
(Brad Talton Jr.)


A lot of work has been done in this area.

As videogaming becomes more and more significant, economically speaking, more and more resources are invested in finding out why the popular games are so popular and how to make more immersive games. This leads to new approaches (as the development of technology permits) which in turn engenders new analyses! Just look at how the philosophy of art has changed since Plato, as developments in art and in its philosophy feed off each other! So what is written here will inevitably become dated.


Early analyses back in the 1990's focused on flow: a mental state when one deeply concentrates on a particular task and enjoys it, thus losing oneself in the activity.

Gameplay and Narrative

Other early analyses focused either on immersion related to a ludological approach: gameplay (getting absorbed in meeting the game's challenges - such as in Space Invaders or PacMan) or a narratological approach: looking at narrative (the building up of the story of one's avatar); and the relationship between these two factors.


Abstract: This lecture is a theoretical discussion of the historical, social and technological forces that produced the contemporary culture of computer game design and development. Although game design might seem to be primarily about making successful commercial products, in fact the subjects we choose to explore in our games are not necessarily dictated by the market, but are the product of our own peculiar philosophical origins. As digital technologists we work with the classical tools of logic and order; as creative people we strive for the expression of romantic ideals. This tension between the classic and the romantic sides of our medium is the source of some of our more intractable creative problems. This lecture is not intended to offer specific solutions, but to enlighten and entertain.
Other lectures by Ernest W Adams (1998-2014)
Abstract: This thesis outlines a research project whose aim was to develop a design taxonomy for the creation of immersion in video-games. These guidelines can then be used in-sync with different stages in video-game design and development to ensure an immersive experience. Integral to this is the 'suspension of disbelief' the end user experiences when fully immersed in a video-game (Holland, 2002;, 2006).

More simplistic

Tangential but fun!

Our own

Oolite Issues


Improving Immersion in Oolite

There are at least three different areas where things can be improved:

1) External stuff. Your computer screen. Too slow a processor to cope with your version of the game (which oxp's you want to load...). Using a controller or a joystick. Using a button box or an external screen. The chair you sit in. Etc., etc.
2) Context. Adding context by reading some of the OoFiction, for example.
3) OXP's. With over 1000 of these, you can easily choose those important to you: go for better graphics, or more realistic physics or economics, or accentuate differences between political systems, or add more equipment which you would expect, etc.

External Stuff

Joysticks and Gamepads can make a massive difference to immersion - if you can find one with works with Oolite, your computer, fits the size of your hands, and feels right to you. Buttonboxes can also help (and make things easier by not having to remember that "b" changes mode for a primed equipment).



Different things work for different people. Some which have been found to impact massively are:

The player environment

The galaxies

Others in space

Better mechanics

More realistic trade


See Category:Missions OXPs for a list of what is available


There are various related musings sprinkled about hither and yon