An avatar reveals a lot…

The choices, it seems,are endless when designing an avatar or a virtual alter ego in games like World of Warcraft.  You can choose to be the strong warrior, or prefer to be the magic-wielding scholar etc.
Scientists at Concordia University asked the question if your avatar resembles your characteristics in real life or if it really is a complete fantasy character.  The answer, quite surprisingly is that your avatar does resemble your personality quite well.

In the study, players were asked to fill out a questionnaire about their personalities and these characteristics were compared with the impression their avatars made on other viewers.
“Overall, the impressions made by the physical traits of the avatar match certain dimensions of the true personality of the creator,” says Dr. Bodur.  “For example, attractive avatars with stylish hair and clothes were perceived to be extroverted.  This was confirmed by the personality measures obtained from participants.”

It’s no surprise then that the study will have significant implications for real-life companies who would like to reach both the virtual and real-world markets, since this correlation between avatar and creator helps identify the consumers behind the avatars and will lead to improved avatar-marketing strategy.
Next to that, it will help guide the choice of visual cues in the design of corporate avatars representing real-world companies.

So, next time you see a muscular, intelligent, extremely handsome avatar in your game, it could well be me :)

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