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

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 »


Pax West 2018

In a few short weeks, I will be joining some of my favorite people at PAX West in Seattle, WA. This time around, I will be participating in two different panels.

On Saturday, I will be part of the The Psychology of The Legend of Zelda Franchise panel alongside Drs. Anthony Bean, Stephen Daniel, and Sarah Hays.

Link is thrust into his destiny of having to defeat evil by collecting items and tools throughout Hyrule, proving himself a hero and eventually leading to a showdown with a villain. However, his journey is not just as simple as defeating evil and saving the princess. There are multiple and significant psychological concepts at play throughout different variations of this video game. This panel will Link the psychological concepts found in each game for discussion…Continue reading »