Keep Calm and Game On

Rachel Kowert, PhD


Hello and welcome to my little corner of the web. Here you can find information on my research, publications, and current projects. If you have any questions or are interested in exploring potential collaborations, please feel free to e-mail me.


Recent Posts

PAX East 2019

In March, I will be traveling to Boston for PAX East 2019. I am lucky enough to be on six panels this year ranging from moral panic to the nostaliga of video games. If you are going to be traveling East for PAX this year, here is where you will be able to find me:

Thursday, March 28th at 5:00 PM, The Psychology of the Final Fantasy Series (Albatross Theatre)Anyone that has played final fantasy understands that the plots are full of twists and turns. The complex characters, gut-wrenching narrative, and the personal struggle of the characters make it a game to relate to. This panel will focus on unpacking these concepts and why this series continues to draw so many people to playing it ‘s immersive experiences. Topics include mental health representation, theoretical concepts, and why we love this game…Continue reading »


Video game loot boxes are psychologically akin to gambling: A rebuttal

In June 2018, a commentary article entitled “Video game loot boxes are psychologically akin to gambling” by Aaron Drummond and James D. Sauer (2018) was published in Nature. The authors assess if loot boxes (i.e., purchasable randomized rewards in video games) are analogous to gambling and, if so, whether or not they should be regulated under the same legal terms.

In order to assess the similarity between loot boxes and gambling, the loot box elements of 22 select video games were evaluated against the unique criteria that distinguish gambling…Continue reading »