7 Science-Based Motivation to Play Games (Topic)

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7 Science-Based Motivation to Play Games


Quantic Foundry is a company that researches gamer motivation from a psychological and sociological point of view. They explore the causal relationship between why gamers of all ages, genders, and backgrounds want to spend time playing. In their recent research, they found 7 new things about motivation to play.

The company conducted a test study, which was attended by about 250,000 gamers. By the way, you can take this test and the system will help you determine your gaming style and advise which games you are most likely to like. Based on the results, Quantic Foundry revealed the following facts about play motivation. In general, researchers identify 12 motives. They placed each of them on the diagram in descending order, where all the numbers add together 100%.


For men - destruction. Collectibles for women

1. Men often play games for competition and destruction

Often the main motive for male gamers is a sense of competition or competition [duels, matches], as well as the desire for destruction [the use of different weapons to kill and destroy the environment in the game, maiming]. The least men interested in games are exploring the game world, as well as having a strong character.


2. Women play for the sake of using fantasy and complete passage [completion]

In the concept of "completion", researchers mean that women are interested in collecting and the desire to complete the game completely. Fantasy, on the other hand, can be compared to the association of oneself with a character, and for women the opportunity to be in the game by someone who you are not in life is the second main motive for the game. But difficult levels of difficulty, game challenges and fast pace are alien to them.


So far, things are going so that these characteristics coincide with gender stereotypes. However, it does not specifically take into account age, which plays a large role.

So different tastes

3. Women are more stable in what they are interested in, but men are not

Looking at these two graphs, you can see that the interests of the male half of gamers are much more difficult to generalize than those of women. Looking at the top 3 motives for each gender, you can see that the interests of gamers are much easier to reach when the opposite is true for gamers. For example, the top 3 make up just over a third of male gamers (by 36.2%), while the top 3 for women covers almost half of the female gamers (by 47.7%).


At the same time, it is not known why everything is so. Most likely, the researchers say, this has to do with how games are sold to women and how both genders approach gameplay in general.

It can also be concluded that a significant number of men, namely 63.8%, are motivated for games not only by competition and destruction, but, for example, fantasy and completion, along with women.

4. The interests of non-binary people are even easier to reach

The total percentage of people who do not identify themselves as either sex in the survey was 1.1%, which translates into numbers - 2819 respondents.

For such people, the main thing in games is character design and fantasy. The ability to become someone else and create your own unique game avatar. Roughly speaking, non-binary people are the very same players who are ready to spend hours creating a character in the editor.


The difference between the most common and least common initial motivation is 8.5 (i.e. 22.0% / 2.6%). And the top 3 motivations cover 50.2% of all non-binary people. Given that non-binary gender is a pervasive category that encompasses a large set of gender identity labels, the most surprising thing about this chart is how consistent their profile of collective play motivation turned out to be.


Oldfai and Newfagi - eternal confrontation

Despite the constant jokes about young and adult players, age affects their motives, not just tastes, rendering and duckling syndrome.

5. Younger gamer (s) are more prone to destruction and competition

So, young players [13-25 years old], as in the case of the first chart, motivate themselves to play wanting to see juicy combat gameplay with destruction and feel the spirit of competition, but the exploration of the gaming world takes the last position among young gamers. And this is the largest gap overall in the study.


6. Oldfags have a huge range of interests

All gamers aged 36+, on the contrary, have the first 4 motivations, one might say, go nose to nose. The most important are Fantasy and Complete passage, as well as their craving for destruction and strategic planning are catching up. But the least adult gamers are interested in the challenges that the game offers and intense, fast gameplay. Such fundamental differences are explained by the fact that with age, interest in competition will disappear, but there is a craving for development.


7. Complete Game Completion - Lowest Risk & Highest Reward Motivation

As you can see from the graphs, the desire to complete the game completely and open everything that it has to offer in it is always in the TOP 3 for almost any age / gender / social group. Thus, the motivation to complete the game completely, to collect something or to get all the achievements has the lowest risk and the highest reward.


This helps explain why collectible-focused games like Pokemon Go can be so appealing to different demographics, especially when those games also avoid more popular motifs and trends such as competition.

The Topic of Article: 7 Science-Based Motivation to Play Games.
Author: Jake Pinkman