Innovation is very important in any sector, but as the technology moves forwards producers and manufacturers must find new ways to innovate. For instance, the video game industry has reached a halt, where the only way to improve user experience through the beaten path is to continue improving on the graphics and action feel. However, this also requires more powerful systems and many of the new games can be quite expensive, which may lower the customer’ expectations and level of experience when it comes to gaming.
So how can you innovate when there’s seemingly nowhere left to go? The solution may be in statistical modeling and big data. By implementing modern data collection practices and statistical methods, game producers have the ability to predict outcomes, better understand player behavior, and test how people would react to their game before it ever reaches the market.
Furthermore, statistical modeling gives game producers the chance to adapt their games in real-time to improve the user experience, and implicitly their revenue. For instance, such practices are fantastic to understand where and why players get stuck in games. It’s also a good way to predict how various members of a gaming community would react in a certain situation.
How is Big Data Connected to the Gaming Industry?
Considering that, in the U.S., the gaming industry is bigger than the movie industry ($20 billion per year) it’s totally understandable that more and more people are interested in a slice. Furthermore, the huge amount of data it generates — EA Games alone generates about 50 terabytes of data each day — makes the gaming industry a perfect candidate for big data technologies.
These technologies are used to keep the customers engaged, create more effective advertising and increase the gaming experience. But what does this mean exactly?
There are three fundamental concepts that can help to understand big data in the gaming world: volume, velocity and variety. The volume and velocity are represented by the amount of data produced at an amazingly fast rate, and variety stands in all the game types we have right now, from massively multiplayer games like World of Warcraft and Minecraft to browser games like Combat Reloaded.
User Experience Improvement
Gamers produce a lot of useful data while they play a game. Regardless of whether they play a popular MMORPG, basketball games in their browser, or simply an offline game, data is created. Statistical modeling technology needs to know how the gamer interacts with the game, when they like to play it and why, with whom, and how much they spend on armor, vehicles, weapons, character customization and other virtual products.
Furthermore, if the game allows you to connect social media profiles, the technology behind it will learn about your likes, and the products available in the game can reflect these findings.
But it’s not just about buying products. A gamer can receive recommendations on character features by being presented with other people’s choices in the same situation. It was actually proven that users presented with tons of options can be quite uncomfortable, so a system that makes recommendations can actually improve their experience.
Difficulty vs. Abandonment
If a game is too difficult, most players will abandon it at an early level, feeling deeply dissatisfied. On the other hand, if it’s too easy, players will get bored, which also leads to abandonment and frustration.
Big data, in combination with statistical modeling, can predict if a game or a specific level is too difficult or too easy, which reduces the costs and time spent trying to fix the game after it’s released. It also reduces players’ frustrations and improves the general gameplay.
Big data is of great help in any industry and when you couple it with statistical modeling, the results can be downright impressive. These technologies are a perfect fit for the gaming industry because they can help create more player-oriented games, where the user experience the focus and not an afterthought.
Furthermore, these technologies will help integrate various commercial products in the gaming experience, without annoying the user or changing the overall experience. It’s a smarter way to do business, and gamers will definitely see an improvement!
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