Experience Assessment and Design in the Analysis of Gameplay by Cowley et al

Experience Assessment and Design in the Analysis of Gameplay is available in Simulation and Gaming (online first version).

Abstract:

We report research on player modeling using psychophysiology and machine learning, conducted through interdisciplinary collaboration between researchers of computer science, psychology, and game design at Aalto University, Helsinki. First, we propose the Play Patterns And eXperience (PPAX) framework to connect three levels of game experience that previously had remained largely unconnected: game design patterns, the interplay of game context with player personality or tendencies, and state-of-the-art measures of experience (both subjective and non-subjective). Second, we describe our methodology for using machine learning to categorize game events to reveal corresponding patterns, culminating in an example experiment. We discuss the relation between automatically detected event clusters and game design patterns, and provide indications on how to incorporate personality profiles of players in the analysis. This novel interdisciplinary collaboration combines basic psychophysiology research with game design patterns and machine learning, and generates new knowledge about the interplay between game experience and design.

Keywords: game design, gameplay patterns, psychophysiology, personality profiles, PPAX framework.

The word cloud of the article's frequently used words.
The word cloud of the article’s frequently used words.

 

Full reference:

  • Cowley, Kosunen, Lankoski, Kivikangas, Järvelä, Ekman, Kemppainen, Ravaja, forthcoming. Experience Assessment and Design in the Analysis of Gameplay. Simulation and Gaming. DOI=10.1177/1046878113513936

Data and R code of two papers

Below is link to the data file and R code used to in the final models in “Models for Story Consistency and Interestingness in Single-Player RPGs” (in Mindtrek 2013) and “Modeling Player-character engagement in Single-player character-driven games” (in ACE 2013 Netherlands).  The models q4 and q7 are used in the first paper and and the model q8 is used in the second paper.

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Modeling Player-character Engagement in Single-player Character-driven Games

Petri Lankoski

In ACE 2013 Netherlands, pp. 572-575.  Copyright Springer 2013. This is author’s version. The definitive version DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-03161-3_56.

Abstract

This pilot study looks at how the formal features of character-driven games can be used to explain player-character engagement. Questionnaire data (N=206), formal game features (in 11 games), and ordinal regression were used in the analysis. The results show that interactive dialogue and cut-scenes showing the romances between the player-character and another character relates to higher character engagement scores, while romance modeling and friendship modeling relate to lower character engagement scores.

Keywords: ordinal regression, player-character, engagement, identification

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Models for Story Consistency and Interestingness in Single-Player RPGs

Petri Lankoski

Published in Academic MindTrek 2013

(c) Petri Lankoski 2013. This is the author’s version of the work. It is posted here for your own personal use. Not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Academic MindTrek 2013. http://dx.doi.org/ [LINK TO BE ADDED]

ABSTRACT

What are the elements that aect story interestingness or consistency in single-player videogames? The question is approached by comparing player evaluations (N=206) of 11 videogames against a set of features derived by formal (qualitative) analysis. Ordinal regression was used to analyze the collected data. The study posits that dialogue system, romance, moral choice, appearance customization, and support for dierent play styles relate to story evaluation. Females tend to judge game stories more favorably and those with doctoral degree less favorably than players with other education.

Categories and Subject Descriptors K.8.4 [Personal Computing]: General|Games

General Terms: Experimentation

Keywords: ordinal regression, games, storytelling, story consistency, story interestingness

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My MindTrek2013 presentation on game story

My MindTrek 2013 presentation: http://www.slideshare.net/slideshow/embed_code/26820610

The presentation relates to my paper

CFP: Game Research Methods

CALL FOR CHAPTER PROPOSALS

During the last few years, several textbooks for game students have become available. While these cover many areas well, the objective of this book is to provide a collection of research methods for undergraduate and graduate level students. The aim of the book is to provide a comprehensive overview of that ways games and phenomena surrounding them can be researched. The book is planned to consist of several individual chapters which are organized into sections showing three main approaches for game research:

  • studying games as artifacts
  • studying playing and gaming as activities
  • studying players and gamers

Each section is planned to include chapters that focus on basic research methods as well as methods for on design-oriented research.

Examples of topic for the sections include (but are not limited to):

  • methods for formal gameplay analysis
  • visual analysis of games
  • video analysis of gaming
  • methods of interviewing gamers
  • using statistical analysis
  • experimental or critical game design research
  • action research through game design
  • close readings of games
  • data mining of gameplay statistics
  • participatory observations of games

As a textbook, the chapters are intended to provide rationales for using methods, descriptions of best practices, as well as critically discussing the pros and cons of the method in focus.

Submission:
1000-1500 word (+ references) abstract giving clear outline of chapter as well as the short author bio. Email your submission to petri.lankoski@sh.se as a plain text (no attachments).

Deadline for the abstract submission: October 20, 2013.

Petri Lankoski & Staffan Björk

An Embodied Cognition Approach for Understanding Role-playing

Article by  Simo Järvelä & me about embodied cognition and role-playing is out.

Abstract

The article proposes that the theories of grounded cognition and embodiment can be utilized in explaining the role-playing experience. Embodied cognition theories assume that cognition is not only a feature of the brain, but the body as a whole and it is interaction with the environment it operates in. Grounded cognition proposes that an action, perceiving an action, and thinking about an action rely on the same processes. Moreover, knowledge is inseparably grounded to bodily states and modalities. Based on the grounded cognition theory and especially embodiment, we argue the character immersion and bleed are natural consequences on how the brain works. Also we illustrate how the operation of simulators explains some of the central features in the creation of fiction and it is similarities to our everyday experiences. In general, grounded cognition provides a rather simple explanation how fiction is experienced as in this theoretical framework action and thinking about an action largely utilize the same brain mechanics and so are phenomenally similar.

Citation information:

Lankoski, P. & Järvelä, S. (2012). An Embodied Cognition Approach for Understanding Role-playing. International Journal of Role-Playing, 3. Available at http://www.ijrp.subcultures.nl/wp-content/issue3/IJRPissue3lankoskijarvella.pdf.