Study report about video gamers motivations data

A gamer psychographic profile is the group of someone's motivations (and their degree) that leads them to play. As motivations precede action, the criteria we studied does not tell what people are doing in the game, but what do they want before playing or looking for/buying a new game.

This is the biggest difference between this classification and the other ones which are empirical (which segment depending on players’ behaviors in the game).

quiz.piwag.com test offers a way to determine their gamer psychographic profile. The scores used are averages out of 5, the possible answers to the test ranging from 0 to 5 (5 being the strongest score in terms of motivation).

Top 10 – Gamers motivations

All answers taken into account, here are the ten motivations with the highest average among the seventy which are part of a video gaming psychographic profile.
So, these are the ten main motivations that lead gamers to play video games, from the tenth to the first rank.

10°

3,95 : Incarnation

Possibility to embody someone or something else. The focus is on the pragmatic part of the role, its possibility of action (like tanking, healing, damage dealing, casting magic spells...).

3,98 : Oblivion

Helps to forget the hustle and bustle of daily life, to empty your mind, to think about something else.

3,98 : Progression

Progression markers (game levels, character levels, talent trees, objectives…).

3,99 : Difference

The originality (in game content), things that differ from what's common.

4,03 : Gameplay (Depth)

The gameplay has depth, it requires a lot of time to master all the subtleties, strong learning curve. This does not prevent it to be accessible.

4,04 : Exploits

Epic feats, achieve exploits and great things.

4,10 : Freedom

Freedom of movement and action, lenient environment, none or very few restrictions.

4,19 : History

Relive or anticipate History (with a capital "H").

4,22 : Gameplay (Diversity)

Rich gameplay with numerous mechanics, preventing routine.

1st

4,41 : Immersion

Distinctive atmosphere, polished, coherent, immersive.

 

From 10 to 20, respectively we have: exploration, sound, astonishment, cooperation, friends, innovation, experimentation, relaxing, endless games, and equality among all gamers. See PDF for the descriptions.


 

Flop 10 – Gamers motivations

All answers taken into account, here are the ten motivations with the lowest average among the seventy which are part of a video gaming psychographic profile.

10°

1.57: Touch

Touch is an integral part of the game (figurines or physical cards for example).

1.57: Find IRL love partner

Meet your soulmate, interact with people who interest you (in a loving way).

1.50: Earnings

Real money gain, presents (real objects).

1.49: Recognition

Ways to be known by the public, to become famous, to draw attention and to be reknown, boost your ego.

1.44: Repetition

Redo the same thing over, over, over and over.

1.43: Outside

Forces you to go outside of your house, to interact with the outside world.

1.40: Movement

Move your body, spend energy, exercise.

1.37: Arousal (sexual)

For adults, erotic and/or pornographic.

1.28: Find IRL sex partner

Have sexual relations with other players IRL ("in the real world").

1er

0.81: Spending

Real money spending, integrated purchases with real money and/or bets with real money.

 

From Flop 10 to 20, we found respectively: goodies, ease, stability, health, committed games, spending time, fear, technology, ravaging (trolling) and submission. See PDF for the descriptions.

Multiplayer

Do gamers prefer solo or multiplayer? Who do they prefer to play with? Which way? Here is a representation of gamers in terms of solo/multiplayer:

Solo

Solitude: 3.54

Multiplayer

Play with friends : 3.75
Play with unknown people: 3.40
Play in couple: 2.90
Play with family: 2.44

Way to play

In cooperation: 3.84
In competition: 2.88

 


 

Introduction on playing time

Here are two representations for all respondents, of EWPT (Estimated Weekly Play Time) and WWPT (Wanted Weekly Play Time). The first one is the actual weekly play time of respondents, the second one is the play time they would like to have weekly.

 
The % is the percentage of respondents for each play time slot. We have segmented each answer in 7 slots:

1.     2h or less a week

2.     Between 2 and 5h a week (less than 1 hour a day)

3.     Between 5 and 10h a week (around 1 hour a day)

4.     Between 10 and 15h a week (around 2 hours a day)

5.     Between 15h and 30h a week (averagely between 2 and 4 hours a day)

6.     Between 30 and 45h a week (averagely between 4 and 6 hours a day)

7.     More than 45h a week (averagely more than 6 hours a day)


 

Men and women, any differences?

Among the 70 motivations, there are few differences between men and women (red score is the highest one, blue score is the lowest one):

 

Significant differences

Women

Men

Difference

Goodies

Goodies around the game, real products (figurines, cards, accessories, decorations…).

2.28

1.75

0.53

Ravaging

Trolling: Possibility to bore others, to stand in their way, to provoke them.

1.67

2.22

0.55

Find IRL sex partner

Have sexual relations with other players IRL ("in the real world").

0.74

1.38

0.64

Near significant differences

Women

Men

Difference

Completion

Many elements to find/complete (levels, achievements, secrets, collection...).

3.66

3.19

0.47

Competition

Being able to come first, better than others, overall winner.

2.5

2.93

0.43

 


 

Regions of the world, any differences?

Considering we go too few respondents from Asia, Africa or Oceania, the regions compared will be Europe, North America and South America. (EU = Europe ; NA = North America ; SA = South America)

Significant differences EU - NA

EU

NA

Difference

Goodies

Goodies around the game, real products (figurines, cards, accessories, decorations…).

1.75

2.54

0.79

Earnings

Real money gain, presents (real objects).

1.43

2.18

0.75

Enrichment

Teaches things, facilitates learning.

2.68

3.32

0.64

Fear

Horrific content, terrifying, strikes fear and stress.

1.98

2.60

0.62

Touch

Touch is an integral part of the game (figurines or physical cards for example).

1.50

2.11

0.61

Nostalgia

Memories and events of the past, encourages nostalgia. (For example retrogaming or games that refer to old things and games.)

2.86

3.46

0.6

Movement

Move your body, spend energy, exercise.

1.34

1.93

0.59

Recognition

Ways to be known by the public, to become famous, to draw attention and to be renown, boost your ego.

1.45

2.00

0.55

Time spending

Fill generally short timeslots (transportation, toilet, breaks, waiting...).

1.94

2.48

0.54

Near significant differences EU - NA

EU

NA

Difference

Spending

Real money spending, integrated purchases with real money and/or bets with real money.

0.77

1.25

0.48

Health

Good for your health, improves the physical condition.

1.93

2.41

0.48

Technology

Technological functions (VR, AR, vibrations, accelerometer, gyroscope…).

2.04

2.50

0.46

Outside

Forces you to go outside of your house, to interact with the outside world.

1.39

1.84

0.45

Duration (Endless)

Never stops, you can commit yourself in the game and plan ahead your progression in the long term.

3.67

3.23

0.44

Stability

Similar to many other games in its mechanics or codes in order to not unsettle you.

1.93

2.34

0.41

 

Significant differences EU - SA

EU

SA

Difference

Time spending

Fill generally short timeslots (transportation, toilet, breaks, waiting...).

1.94

3.04

1.1

Touch

Touch is an integral part of the game (figurines or physical cards for example).

1.50

2.54

1.04

Goodies

Goodies around the game, real products (figurines, cards, accessories, decorations…).

1.75

2.53

0.78

Enrichment

Teaches things, facilitates learning.

2.68

3.43

0.75

Technology

Technological functions (VR, AR, vibrations, accelerometer, gyroscope…).

2.04

2.76

0.72

Movement

Move your body, spend energy, exercise.

1.34

2.02

0.68

Challenge (intellectual)

Test mental skills, high level of difficulty in terms of thought process, puzzles, brain-teasers, general knowledge…

3.19

3.8

0.61

Reincarnation

Possibility to live someone else's life and work. The focus is on the immersive part of the role (like jobs simulators). Similar to catharsis.

2.21

2.79

0.58

Health

Good for your health, improves the physical condition.

1.93

2.50

0.57

Duration (Endless)

Never stops, you can commit yourself in the game and plan ahead your progression in the long term.

3.67

3.11

0.56

Challenge (physical)

Test physical skills, high level of difficulty in terms of reflexes, speedrun, highscore…

2.68

3.20

0.52

Find IRL sex partner

Have sexual relations with other players IRL ("in the real world").

1.30

0.78

0.52

Arousal (sexual)

For adults, erotic and/or pornographic.

1.39

0.87

0.52

Couple

Play with your partner.

2.92

2.42

0.5

Near significant differences EU - SA

EU

SA

Difference

Laugh

Aimed at making you laugh, making you smile or a funny atmosphere.

3.36

3.85

0.49

Fear

Horrific content, terrifying, strikes fear and stress.

1.98

2.45

0.47

Completion

Many elements to find/complete (levels, achievements, secrets, collection...).

3.23

3.68

0.45

Earnings

Real money gain, presents (real objects).

1.43

1.88

0.45

Inactivity

Not moving, physically calm, not requiring any physical capacity (like reflexes or dexterity for example).

2.88

3.33

0.45

Story

Advanced/crafted storyline, quality narrative, vast diegesis (universe, background, fluff…).

4.22

3.78

0.44

Duration (Long)

Finishing a game session requires a lot of time, even many hours.

3.56

3.14

0.42

Outside

Forces you to go outside of your house, to interact with the outside world.

1.39

1.81

0.42

Ease

Easy victory, almost impossible to lose.

1.82

2.22

0.4

 

Significant differences NA - SA

NA

SA

Difference

Time spending

Fill generally short timeslots (transportation, toilet, breaks, waiting...).

2.48

3.04

0.56

Near significant differences NA - SA

NA

SA

Difference

Touch

Touch is an integral part of the game (figurines or physical cards for example).

2.11

2.54

0.43

Arousal (sexual)

For adults, erotic and/or pornographic.

1.29

0.87

0.42

 


 

Age groups, any differences?

We will not talk about motivations of people under the age of 15, which will stay private. Regarding 45+ people, we have not collected enough answers from them to compare.
Here are the differences between three age groups: 15-24, 25-34 and 35-44

Significant differences 15-24 – 25-34

15-24

25-34

Difference

Competition

Being able to come first, better than others, overall winner.

3.10

2.52

0.58

Ravaging

Trolling: Possibility to bore others, to stand in their way, to provoke them.

2.36

1.84

0.52

Near significant differences 15-24 – 25-34

15-24

25-34

Difference

Earnings

Real money gain, presents (real objects).

1.65

1.18

0.47

Recognition

Ways to be known by the public, to become famous, to draw attention and to be renown, boost your ego.

1.63

1.17

0.46

Challenge (physical)

Test physical skills, high level of difficulty in terms of reflexes, speedrun, highscore…

2.91

2.47

0.44

 

Significant differences 25-34 – 35-44

25-34

35-44

Difference

Ravaging

Trolling: Possibility to bore others, to stand in their way, to provoke them.

1.84

1.17

0.67

Near significant differences 25-34 – 35-44

25-34

35-44

Difference

History

Relive or anticipate History (with a capital "H").

3.74

3.26

0.48

Veracity

Presents transcripts of real/historic facts, nothing is fiction.

3.00

2.56

0.44

Cooperation

Cooperative game against a common enemy, solve puzzles together, all together towards the objective.

2.67

2.25

0.42

 

Significant differences 15-24 – 35-44

15-24

35-44

Difference

Ravaging

Trolling: Possibility to bore others, to stand in their way, to provoke them.

2.36

1.17

1.19

Competition

Being able to come first, better than others, overall winner.

3.10

2.21

0.89

Challenge (physical)

Test physical skills, high level of difficulty in terms of reflexes, speedrun, highscore…

2.91

2.16

0.75

Friends

Play with your circle of friends.

3.89

3.19

0.7

Cooperation

Cooperative game against a common enemy, solve puzzles together, all together towards the objective.

3.96

3.26

0.7

The Others

Share an experience with other people, meet/interact with new people; can be in coop, competitive or both.

3.53

2.90

0.63

Recognition

Ways to be known by the public, to become famous, to draw attention and to be renown, boost your ego.

1.63

1.01

0.62

Earnings

Real money gain, presents (real objects).

1.65

1.05

0.6

Goodies

Goodies around the game, real products (figurines, cards, accessories, decorations…).

1.95

1.43

0.52

Find IRL love partner

Meet your soulmate, interact with people who interest you (in a loving way).

1.67

1.15

0.52

Near significant differences 15-24 – 35-44

15-24

35-44

Difference

History

Relive or anticipate History (with a capital "H").

3.04

2.56

0.48

Adrenaline

Fast rhythm, explosions, abundance of elements, escape valve.

3.23

2.75

0.48

Veracity

Presents transcripts of real/historic facts, nothing is fiction.

2.71

2.25

0.46

IRL Consequences

The game has consequences in the real life: Will to leave a durable trace of your acts outside the game, to participate in something bigger than the game, to have an impact on society and its future. (Like to help science for example.)

2.77

2.32

0.45

Fairness

Equitable games: Advantages can be given to the most novice player or handicaps can be given to the best one. The game can also re-balance itself depending on actions of players. (For example, the game helps players that are losing or punish players that are winning.)

2.99

2.55

0.44

Linear correlations

The more the correlation ratio between two motivations is close to 1, the more the respondents are willing to give two identical scores to these motivations.
The more the correlation ratio is close to -1, the more the respondents are willing to give two opposite scores to these motivations. We did not have strong negative correlations.

 

Top 20 linear correlations (from the strongest to the weakest)

Ratio

Veracity

Presents transcripts of real/historic facts, nothing is fiction.

History

Relive or anticipate History (with a capital "H").

0.78

Movement

Move your body, spend energy, exercise.

Health

Good for your health, improves the physical condition.

0.67

Find IRL love partner

Meet your soulmate, interact with people who interest you (in a loving way).

Find IRL sex partner

Have sexual relations with other players IRL ("in the real world").

0.66

Immersion

Distinctive atmosphere, polished, coherent, immersive.

Story

Advanced/crafted storyline, quality narrative, vast diegesis (universe, background, fluff…).

0.65

Arousal (sexual)

For adults, erotic and/or pornographic.

Find IRL sex partner

Have sexual relations with other players IRL ("in the real world").

0.60

Laugh

Aimed at making you laugh, making you smile or a funny atmosphere.

Joy

Lifts the spirit, leads to positive thoughts.

0.59

Friends

Play with your circle of friends.

The Others

Share an experience with other people, meet/interact with new people; can be in coop, competitive or both.

0.56

Movement

Move your body, spend energy, exercise.

Outside

Forces you to go outside of your house, to interact with the outside world.

0.54

Artistic

Conveys a message, express an author's vision, induce an interpretation.

Soul-Searching

Question oneself, put into question achievements, gain a new point of view regarding common things, broaden perception, increase self-confidence.

0.53

Earnings

Real money gain, presents (real objects).

Recognition

Ways to be known by the public, to become famous, to draw attention and to be renown, boost your ego.

0.50

Enrichment

Teaches things, facilitates learning.

Health

Good for your health, improves the physical condition.

0.49

Cooperation

Cooperative game against a common enemy, solve puzzles together, all together towards the objective.

Friends

Play with your circle of friends.

0.49

Cooperation

Cooperative game against a common enemy, solve puzzles together, all together towards the objective.

The Others

Share an experience with other people, meet/interact with new people; can be in coop, competitive or both.

0.49

Progression

Progression markers (game levels, character levels, talent trees, objectives…).

Completion

Many elements to find/complete (levels, achievements, secrets, collection...).

0.48

Oblivion

Helps to forget the hustle and bustle of daily life, to empty your mind, to think about something else.

Relax

Helps to unwind, to evacuate stress.

0.48

Control

Bend the environment to your will, convey your skills (artistic or not), customize things.

Experimentation

Possibility to experiment/test things thanks to the game mechanics (physical engine, numerous strategies or outcomes…).

0.47

Joy

Lifts the spirit, leads to positive thoughts.

Relax

Helps to unwind, to evacuate stress.

0.47

Outside

Forces you to go outside of your house, to interact with the outside world.

Health

Good for your health, improves the physical condition.

0.47

Couple

Play with your partner.

Family

Thought out for the family, parents with their children, brothers/sisters together; can be in coop, competitive or both.

0.46

Freedom

Freedom of movement and action, lenient environment, none or very few restrictions.

Control

Bend the environment to your will, convey your skills (artistic or not), customize things.

0.45

 

What is Piwag?

Every day, hundreds of new games are available with very diverse identities and which meet many different tastes. It is almost impossible to browse through all of them without missing the one that might please us.

Piwag is a search and recommendation engine (in development), whose goal is to create a place where the games will be well sorted, classified and labeled, where the ratings of the players will be more precise and objective, and most importantly where the recommendations and search results will be neutral.

We wish there were a place where every player had a way to find a game that matches their desires among all the available offer, without being considered as a product; a place where the success of any video game was dependent on its own qualities and not on the quality of its marketing campaign; a place where specialized media professionals would be able to reference their work so that it could be quickly accessible by everyone. That is what Piwag is about.