4 Ways Analytics Boosts Game Development, Gameplay, And More
by Analytics Insight
March 28, 2022
Analytics helps professionals in multiple industries build better products, and games are no different
Games are serious business. Once thought of as entertainment options, games have blossomed into a mainstream pop culture phenomenon. Game developers and studios have long invested significant resources in development.
While a certain proportion of gamers prefer traditional card games, simple games like free online solitaire, or point-and-click games like Mini Metro, a significant number of gamers expect smooth user experiences and immersive game worlds. The recent rise of the metaverse as a business model has made the mainstream even more playful.
Analytics helps professionals in multiple industries build better products, and games are no different. Here are four ways analytics are driving the gaming world.
Games these days are extremely immersive, with multiple options for players to explore. While popular games retain a central storyline with a few side quests or options, a growing number of games feature open worlds. An open world refers to a game environment where a player can create and define their experience based on how they interact with other characters in the game.
For example, the recently released game Elden Ring allows players to access many combinations of quests depending on the time, method and context of interaction with game characters. Player interactions and experiences complex cannot be created without the contribution of analyses.
During game development, game studios test elements of their creation on pilot audiences and monitor everything from player reactions to engagement rates. Given the complex in-game relationships between player actions and in-game character reactions, analytics are used to monitor everything from quest implications to defining character responses.
In short, games are data-driven creations, no matter how complex and artful their storylines.
Games are increasingly being used to supplement and go beyond the main sources of income. For example, during the early days of pandemic-enforced shutdowns, the Philippines and Indonesia turned to blockchain-based games to earn rewards via in-game tokens and NFTs.
These NFTs increased in value as players increased their skill levels in the game. In turn, this allowed players to earn money despite being locked up at home and deprived of their main sources of income. Dubbed play-to-earn, game monetization is disrupted and developers are rethinking traditional models.
Typically, mainstream games require users to purchase in-game software and upgrades. Playing to Win also requires upfront purchases, but offers players the opportunity to collect that money and earn additional coins. Due to its popularity, data regarding the best gaming platforms to win is valuable.
Gamers crave data on the most popular and lucrative gambling games, as well as NFT information related to the most popular games. Online directories that list in-game NFT prices, chart gaming token trends, and offer information on upcoming token bounties are the norm.
These patterns have prompted traditional developers to rethink. For example, creating in-game digital lobbies where players can spend and earn money, or offering merchants the ability to sell players’ products in a metaverse are options being explored.
As game studios collect more data and gamers demand more analytics, there’s no doubt that the way we think about video games will quickly change.
Game user experience
User experiences are paramount in games. Gamers are a very discerning audience and can be quick to point out flaws. For example, all bugs in the game will be exploited and the word will spread through the community like wildfire. In the past, gamers recognized the lack of sophistication in software and forgave studios for such shortcomings.
However, thanks to hyper-realistic gameplay and strong competition, players are less kind to bugs. Analytics help developers monitor in-game actions and track potential issues before they escalate. For example, increasing player engagement in a part of the game can indicate an interesting event.
That’s not to say that bugs only cause engagement spikes. Interesting characters and engaging storylines also keep players flocking to certain parts of the game. Metrics such as number of interactions per NPC or storyline, nature of player actions, and player engagement cards help develop the strengths and weaknesses of UX.
The result is a consistently engaging user experience that captivates audiences and makes them want more.
As monetization models change, game studios must rethink product positioning and ad distribution. Gamers are extremely sensitive to product placement, and poor ad delivery can compromise a game. Ads typically power casual games on mobile devices, but that doesn’t mean developers can place them anywhere on the Internet. ‘screen.
Analytics helps developers determine the best placement opportunities. For example, high-engagement areas that don’t hinder gaming experiences are best used for ads. In-game product placement can also take the form of a character using a product in some way.
Analytics help developers monitor audience reactions and create better ad delivery in their games.
Engagement and metrics are at the heart of any successful gaming experience. Game studios and developers leverage the insights provided by metrics to create memorable experiences that keep gamers coming back for more.
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