19 January, 2009
One of the most vital aspects of online games is the new player experience. It becomes even trickier when you consider a person who has never played online games before.
This week, let’s consider the new player experience in an online game.
The important thing is to understand the previous experience of the newbie. This influences what areas they need to learn.
- Have they played online games before?
- Have they played games in the same gameplay genre (e.g. RPGs) before?
- Have they played games in a similar setting (e.g. high fantasy) before?
- Do they have friends in the game?
- Do they have the patience to read and/or listen to instructions?
One issue is trying to find the “one size fits all” approach to the new player experience. With just the 5 questions asked above, that means we have 32 different types of players to consider; and, these aren’t the only questions we could ask. Of course, some questions trump others: a player without the patience to read or listen to a tutorial isn’t going to learn much through traditional tutorial methods.
What are your thoughts? How can we improve the new player experience in our games?