Game Analytics pp 621-638 | Cite as

Improving Gameplay with Game Metrics and Player Metrics

  • Graham McAllister
  • Pejman Mirza-Babaei
  • Jason Avent


Designing and developing video games is typically a long and demanding process. The overall aim of developing a game that is enjoyable and rewarding to play for everyone is a complex one due to the diversity of players who may potentially interact with the game. Understanding how players interact and behave during gameplay is of vital importance to developers. An accurate understanding of the gameplay experience during development can help identify and resolve any potential problem areas before release, leading to a better player experience and arguably, greater game review scores and sales. There are two main sources from which potentially useful data can be extracted: the video game (game metrics), and the player (player metrics).


Video Game Galvanic Skin Response Player Behavior User Research Player Experience 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Pure images courtesy of Disney Enterprises, Inc.

Selected Bibliography

  1. Ambinder, M. (2011). Biofeedback in gameplay: How valve measures physiology to enhance gaming experience. Presented in GDC Vault.Google Scholar
  2. Cacioppo, J. T., Tassinary, L. G., & Berntson, G. G. (2007). Handbook of psychophysiology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Pure [Xbox 360], Black Rock Studios. Published by Disney Interactive Studios (2008, September).Google Scholar
  4. Drachen, A., & Canossa, A. (2009). Towards gameplay analysis via gameplay metrics. In MindTrek ’09: Proceedings of the 13th international MindTrek conference: Everyday life in the ubiquitous era. ACMGoogle Scholar
  5. Drachen, A., Nacke, L. E., Yannakakis, G., & Pedersen, A. L. (2010). Correlation between heart rate, electrodermal activity and player experience in first-person shooter games. In Sandbox 2010. Los Angeles: ACM.Google Scholar
  6. Feigenbaum, E. A., & Simon, H. A. (1962). A theory of the serial position effect. British Journal of Psychology, 53, 307–320.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Hazlett, R. (2008). Using biometric measurement to help develop emotionally compelling games. In K. Isbister & N. Schaffer (Eds.), Game usability: Advancing the player experience (pp. 187–205). San Francisco: Morgan Kaufmann.Google Scholar
  8. Kivikangas, J. M., Ekman, I., Chanel, G., Järvelä, S., Salminen, M., Cowley, B., Henttonen, P., & Ravaja, N. (2010). Review on psychophysiological methods in game research. In Proceedings of 1st Nordic DiGRA, DiGRAGoogle Scholar
  9. Mandryk, R. (2008). Physiological measures for game evaluation. In K. Isbister & N. Schaffer (Eds.), Game usability: Advancing the player experience (pp. 207–235). San Francisco: Morgan Kaufmann.Google Scholar
  10. Mandryk, R. L., & Atkins, M. S. (2007). A fuzzy physiological approach for continuously modeling emotion during interaction with play technologies. International Journal of Human Computer Studies, 65, 329–347.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Mandryk, R. L., Atkins, M. S., & Inkpen, K. M. (2006). A continuous and objective evaluation of emotional experience with interactive play environments. In Proceedings of the conference on human factors in computing systems (CHI 2006). Montreal: ACM.Google Scholar
  12. Mirza-Babaei, P., & McAllister, G. (2011). Biometric storyboards: Visualising meaningful gameplay events. In CHI 2011 BBI workshop proceedings, Vancouver, BC, Canada.Google Scholar
  13. Mirza-Babaei, P., Long, S., Foley, E., & McAllister, G. (2011). Understanding the contribution of biometrics to games user research. Full research paper at Think Design Play: The fifth international conference of the Digital Research Association (DiGRA 2011), Hilversum, The Netherlands.Google Scholar
  14. Mirza-Babaei, P., Nacke, L., Fitzpatrick, G., White, G. R., McAllister, G., Collins, N. (2012). Biometric storyboards: Visualising game user research data. In Proceedings of CHI EA 2012, Austin, TX, USA.Google Scholar
  15. Nacke, L. E. (2011). Directions in physiological game evaluation and interaction. In CHI 2011 BBI workshop proceedings, Vancouver, BC, Canada.Google Scholar
  16. Nacke, L., & Lindley, C. (2009). Affective ludology, flow and immersion in a first–person shooter: Measurement of player experience. Loading 3(5).
  17. Nacke, L., Lindley, C., & Stellmach, S. (2008). Log who’s playing: Psychophysiological game analysis made easy through event logging. In Proceedings of fun and games, second international conference (pp. 150–157). Eindhoven: Springer.Google Scholar
  18. Nacke, L., Grimshaw, M. N., & Lindley, C. A. (2010). More than a feeling: Measurement of sonic user experience and psychophysiology in a first-person shooter game. Interacting with Computers, 22(5), 336–343.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Quesenbery, W., & Brooks K. (2010). Storytelling for user experience. Edited by Marta Justak. New York: Louis Rosenfeld.Google Scholar
  20. Ravaja, N., Saari, T., Salminen, M., Laarni, J., & Kallinen, K. (2006a). Phasic emotional reactions to video game events: A psychophysiological investigation. Media Psychology, 8(4), 343–367.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Ravaja, N., Timo, S., Marko, T., Jari, L., Mikko, S., & Matias, K. (2006b). Spatial presence and emotions during video game playing: Does it matter with whom you play? Presence: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments, 15(4), 381–392.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Schell, J. (2008). The art of game design. Amsterdam: Elsevier/Morgan Kaufmann.Google Scholar
  23. Soppitt, M., & McAllister, G. (2011). Understanding player experience using sequential analysis. In Think design play: The fifth international conference of the Digital Research Association (DIGRA), Hilversum, The Netherlands.Google Scholar
  24. Tognetti, S., Garbarino, M., Bonanno, A. T., Matteucci, M., & Bonarini, A. (2010). Enjoyment recognition from physiological data in a car racing game. In Proceedings of the 3rd international workshop on affective interaction in natural environments (AFFINE ’10) (pp. 3–8). New York: ACM.Google Scholar
  25. Yannakakis, G. N., Hallam, J., & Lund, H. H. (2008). Entertainment capture through heart rate activity in physical interactive playground. User Modelling and User-Adapted Interaction, 18(1), 207–243.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Graham McAllister
    • 1
  • Pejman Mirza-Babaei
    • 2
  • Jason Avent
    • 3
  1. 1.Player ResearchHove, East SussexUK
  2. 2.University of SussexBrightonUK
  3. 3.Disney Interactive StudiosGlendaleUSA

Personalised recommendations