F2P Summit: Strong data insights crucial to understanding player behaviour

Know your free-to-play gamer types in order to monetise them

GamesAnalytics has encouraged free-to-play developers to pay more attention to the type of consumers they attract if they want to improve their in-game spending.

Speaking at today’s F2P Summit in London, the firm’s Mark Robinson said taking action with specific player types in mind is more effective at improving monetisation than a blanket solution for all users.

The example he gave was an unnamed MMO, in which GamesAnalytics and the developer identified four types of players: the Low-Skilled Persistants and Kamikaze Killers, who played regularly but didn’t feel the need to buy in-game items, and the Novices and Strategic Elites, who weren’t compelled to continue playing.

Looking at the player behaviour data and considering the type of players, it was established that the Strategic Elites would in fact be more inclined to spend more time and potentially money with the MMO if they were rewarded more. As a result, the rewards system was tweaked slightly to improve the experience for these players, while maintaining the appeal for the other player types.

Another example given was an online poker game, with player types ranging from the high-spending, rarely-winning Maniacs to the more frugal but succesful Rocks. If you were to allow a system where chip-hording Rocks were usually on tables with reluctant newcomers, thus reducing the chances of people betting, the experience would turn away both player types.

Robinson stressed that by matchmaking certain player types, game developers could improve how much players enjoyed the game and therefore how much they spent.

He also urged developers to pay close attention to their player data in order to identify these different types and behaviours.

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