Motion blur effects are commonly used in racing games [Sousa 2008; Vlachos 2008; Ritchie et al. 2010] to add a sense of realism as well as to minimize artifacts due to strobing and temporal aliasing [Glassner 1999]. Typically, motion blur computations are expensive, and for real-time applications, trade-offs are made between the quality of the effects and the computational cost. In this work, we wanted to understand: (i) the practical impact of the motion blur effect on the player experience; and (ii) whether the value gained by including the effect is worth the extra cost in computation, real-time performance, development time, etc. We studied the objective and subjective aspects of the player experience for Split Second: Velocity (Black Rock Studios, Disney), a high-speed racing game, in the presence and absence of the motion blur effect. We found that neither objective measures of participants’ performance (e.g., time to complete a race) nor subjective measures of the player experience (e.g., enjoyment of a race, perceived speed) were affected, even though participants could reliably detect the presence of the motion blur effect. We conclude that motion blur effects, while useful for reducing artifacts and achieving a realistic ‘look,’ do not significantly enhance the player experience.
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