Toronto Metropolitan University
Gao, Senghan MRP.pdf (1.16 MB)

Passing the Flame of Care : A Study of Shitu (Master-Apprentice) Social Relationship in Chinese Video Games Based on the Examination of JX3

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posted on 2023-05-24, 20:32 authored by Shenghan Gao

Shitu, translated as Master-Apprentice, is a unique type of digital relationship that exists in Chinese massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs) such as JX3. In recent years, there has been an increased interest in the study of the digitized social relationship in online video games, but few have studied the social interactions between the Shitu (Master-Apprentice) in video games. Previous studies (Cole & Griffiths, 2007) divide game players into 3 categories by their types of interpersonal interactions, while this research further explores the Master-Apprentice relationship as the 4th category. It demonstrates the history of Shitu relationship in Chinese culture and previous video games, then explains its features compared to other types of digital relationships, its application in in-game activities and lastly potential influences on game players and community.



  • Master of Digital Media


  • Digital Media

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • MRP

Thesis Advisor

David Chandross