Cybersickness affects the affective appraisal of a virtual environment
van der Spek, E.D.
van Emmerik, M.L.
TNO Defensie en Veiligheid
It is well known that navigation through VEs may have a negative effect on the physical well-being of observers, by inducing cybersickness. In this study we investigated if cybersickness interacts with the appraisal of a simulated environment. Using the Half-Life 2 level editor we created a VE representing fictitious rural and urban areas. This environment was displayed by means of back projection onto a semi-transparent (frosted) screen, and was viewed from 1 m distance. For a 17 minute period, 32 subjects passively watched a walk through this VE, where the visual scene continuously performed a quasi-sinusoidally frontal roll oscillation. Immediately after the exposure, the remaining subjects filled out an appraisal questionnaire rating the environment on 4 dimensions: arousing-sleepy, pleasant-unpleasant, exciting-gloomy and distressing-relaxing.
Two subjects were unable to complete the experiment due to severe nausea. When we divide our subject population into two categories: non-sick when the physical well-being ratings were below 2 (19 subjects), and sick for ratings of 2 or higher
(11 subjects), we find a statistical significant effect of sickness on appraisal (p<0.003). a post hoc test contributes this to the arousing-sleepy dimension (p<0.05) and the pleasant-unpleasant dimension (p<0.06): sick subjects typically
rate more sleepiness and unpleasantness than non-sick subjects. We conclude that cybersickness may be a confounding factor in the affective appraisal of VEs.
Keywords: Cybersickness, camera oscillation, affective appraisal, environmental aesthetics, virtual environments, game level editors.
To reference this document use:
The First International Symposium on Visually Induced Motion Sickness, Fatigue, and Photosensitive Epileptic Seizures (VIMS2007). 10 - 11 December 2007. The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong, 170-177