Recent evidence suggests that when observing real-world events involving humans, people constantly monitor perceptual features that guide conceptual understanding of ongoing events. The current work asks if people monitor and interpret perceptual features (risks) differently when viewing events involving virtual characters in simulated environments. This investigation stems from theories of grounded cognition, which maintain that the environment in which cognitive processes take place affects the characters of the processes. An eye-tracking study was conducted. The results provide evidence that when perceiving events in simulated environments, people perform expectation driven processing more extensively, and that there is a temporal lag of monitoring perceptual features and integrating them into ongoing event representations.

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