The Effects of Delay on Game Actions: Moving Target Selection with a Mouse

The Effects of Delay on Game Actions: Moving Target Selection with a Mouse


Mark Claypool, Ragnhild Eg, and Kjetil Raaen

In Proceedings of the ACM Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play (CHI PLAY)
Extended Abstract
Austin, Texas, USA
October 16-19, 2016


In modern computer systems, user input, particularly for computer games, is affected by delay from local systems, networks and servers. While general awareness of the degradation effects of delay on player performance and quality of experience are well known, an understanding quantifying how specific player actions are impacted by delay is missing. This work presents a user study that gathers data on player actions for a range of delay and game conditions for the fundamental game action of selecting a moving target with a mouse. Analysis shows player sensitivity to delays in all conditions, with particular sensitivity when targets are fast. From the data, we derive a simple analytic model that is a promising step towards a broadly applicable tool to better understand and compensate for delay in games and interactive applications.


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