Podcast 14: Why People Play Games

Hey. I’ve got a question for you: Why do you play games?

It’s not a simple question once you start thinking deeply about it, and there are a number of ways to approach it. Some people play just for fun, some to socialize, some to escape the real world, some to relieve stress.

Another way to approach it is to think about what kinds of activities, mechanics, and experiences in a game motivate you to play that game over any other game. Or a different activity, for that matter. You’ve got thousands of games to choose from at any moment. Why are you playing what you’ve been playing lately?

That’s going to be the topic of discussion in this episode of the podcast, with my guest Dr. Nick Yee from Quantic Foundry. He’s going to share some research that he and his colleagues have been doing around player types, gaming motivations, and personality types. Maybe you’ll learn something about what makes your gamer soul tick.

Dr. Nick Yee from Quantic Foundry

Dr. Nick Yee from Quantic Foundry

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5 thoughts on “Podcast 14: Why People Play Games

    • Hmm, actually, the way “Strategy” is defined on their map, FGs would probably fall in line with something like Starcraft actually. I suspect the definition of strategy they are using would always exclude anything really fast paced though.

      • Yeah, from my conversation it seems like strategy is slower paced, more deliberative, and involves considering options. Not necessarily turn based, but not fast action.

  1. Just to add my 2 cents. Short answer for me is I like to explore and inhabit virtual worlds. That’s why I’m not a big fan of abstract games, like Tetris, Chess, match 3. But as soon as you add world to it, it makes it much more appealing to me. Good example is Puzzle Quest, which is one of my favorite games on PSP. It is using match 3 mechanic for fight and do other stuff. But it also has world map, characters, quests, story etc. My favorite games usually have big open worlds. And nowadays I find it hard to enjoy linear games.

    I believe that there is no right answer to question “why people play games”. Because games are too different, and two people can play same game and get enjoyment from completely different things in this game.

    p.s. I know it’s a bad idea to post comment before I’ve finished listening whole episode, but I couldn’t resist.

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