A Large-Scale, Longitudinal Study of User Profiles in World of Warcraft
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A Large-Scale, Longitudinal Study of User Profiles in World of Warcraft

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  • 1. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013A Large-Scale, LongitudinalStudy of User Profiles inWorld of WarcraftJonathan Bell, Swapneel Sheth, Gail KaiserColumbia University, NewYork, NY USAPROGRAMMING SYSTEMS LABCOLUMBIA UNIVERSITYhttp://www.psl.cs.columbia.edu/enable(vt):to make possible, practical, or easy1
  • 2. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Motivation2
  • 3. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Motivation• We’re a group of Software Engineers.2
  • 4. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Motivation• We’re a group of Software Engineers.• Recently studying Gamification of SoftwareDevelopment2
  • 5. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Motivation• We’re a group of Software Engineers.• Recently studying Gamification of SoftwareDevelopment• What principles can we carry over fromgame design to apply it to non-gamecontexts?2
  • 6. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Motivation• We’re a group of Software Engineers.• Recently studying Gamification of SoftwareDevelopment• What principles can we carry over fromgame design to apply it to non-gamecontexts?• Why not look to real games?2
  • 7. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Game Studies3
  • 8. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Game Studies• Qualitative Research:• 100’s-1000’s of samples [Debeuvais; Yee]• Personalities, demographics, etc3
  • 9. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Game Studies• Qualitative Research:• 100’s-1000’s of samples [Debeuvais; Yee]• Personalities, demographics, etc• Quantitative Research:• 10,000’s-100,000’s of samples[Duchenaut; Lewis]• In-game demographics, etc3
  • 10. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 20134
  • 11. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013WoW: QuantitativeData5
  • 12. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013WoW: QuantitativeData• In-game “Demographics”• Guild, Class, Race, Level5
  • 13. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013WoW: QuantitativeData• In-game “Demographics”• Guild, Class, Race, Level• Quests5
  • 14. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013WoW: QuantitativeData• In-game “Demographics”• Guild, Class, Race, Level• Quests• Achievements5
  • 15. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013WoW: QuantitativeData• In-game “Demographics”• Guild, Class, Race, Level• Quests• Achievements• Professions5
  • 16. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013WoW: QuantitativeData• In-game “Demographics”• Guild, Class, Race, Level• Quests• Achievements• Professions• Raids5
  • 17. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013WoW: QuantitativeData• In-game “Demographics”• Guild, Class, Race, Level• Quests• Achievements• Professions• Raids• Companions5
  • 18. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013WoW: QuantitativeData• In-game “Demographics”• Guild, Class, Race, Level• Quests• Achievements• Professions• Raids• Companions• Mounts5
  • 19. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013WoW: QuantitativeData• In-game “Demographics”• Guild, Class, Race, Level• Quests• Achievements• Professions• Raids• Companions• Mounts• Titles5
  • 20. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013WoW: QuantitativeData• In-game “Demographics”• Guild, Class, Race, Level• Quests• Achievements• Professions• Raids• Companions• Mounts• Titles• Reputation5
  • 21. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 20136
  • 22. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 20136
  • 23. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 20136
  • 24. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 20136
  • 25. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 20136
  • 26. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 20136
  • 27. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Methodology7
  • 28. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Accessing the Data• Blizzard’s API allows you to retrieve thisper-character• No option to list all characters• How do we discover the characters?8
  • 29. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Character Discovery9
  • 30. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Character Discovery• Blizzard does list characters by guild9
  • 31. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Character Discovery• Blizzard does list characters by guild• Several popular websites have listings ofguilds and characters [e.g.WarcraftRealms]9
  • 32. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Character Discovery• Blizzard does list characters by guild• Several popular websites have listings ofguilds and characters [e.g.WarcraftRealms]• Solution: Find all guilds belonging to thesecharacters.And find all members of allidentified guilds9
  • 33. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Fetching the Data• Blizzard API is rate-limited per-IP• Solution: use a cluster of 60+ IPs to crawlthe API10
  • 34. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Fetching the Data• Blizzard API is rate-limited per-IP• Solution: use a cluster of 60+ IPs to crawlthe APIMySQLCrawlerNodes(60+)ManagementConsole (Normal PC)Retrieve "todo-list"Store resultsStarts NodesRuns Analysis10
  • 35. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 20130"200000"400000"600000"800000"1000000"1200000"1400000"9/29/2011"9/30/2011"10/1/2011"10/2/2011"10/3/2011"10/4/2011"10/5/2011"10/6/2011"10/7/2011"10/8/2011"10/9/2011"10/10/2011"10/11/2011"10/12/2011"10/13/2011"10/14/2011"Characters)Date)Crawler)Performance)11
  • 36. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Raw Data• Found approximately 12 million characterswith basic information• Complete data for half of theseBasic information12
  • 37. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Other MMORPG Study Sizes1"10"100"1,000"10,000"100,000"1,000,000"10,000,000"100,000,000"WoW:"Debeauvais"2011"EverQuest:"Williams"[2008]"Everquest,"Ul<ma,"Camelot,"SW"Galaxies:"Yee"[2006]"WoW:"Harrison"[2011]"WoW:"Lewis"[2010]"WoW:"Bell"[2013]"(1)"WoW:"Bell"[2013]"(2)"SampleSize(LogScale)SampleSizeofMMORPGStudies13
  • 38. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Other MMORPG Study Sizes1"10"100"1,000"10,000"100,000"1,000,000"10,000,000"100,000,000"WoW:"Debeauvais"2011"EverQuest:"Williams"[2008]"Everquest,"Ul<ma,"Camelot,"SW"Galaxies:"Yee"[2006]"WoW:"Harrison"[2011]"WoW:"Lewis"[2010]"WoW:"Bell"[2013]"(1)"WoW:"Bell"[2013]"(2)"SampleSize(LogScale)SampleSizeofMMORPGStudiesClosest: 136,04713
  • 39. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Other MMORPG Study Sizes1"10"100"1,000"10,000"100,000"1,000,000"10,000,000"100,000,000"WoW:"Debeauvais"2011"EverQuest:"Williams"[2008]"Everquest,"Ul<ma,"Camelot,"SW"Galaxies:"Yee"[2006]"WoW:"Harrison"[2011]"WoW:"Lewis"[2010]"WoW:"Bell"[2013]"(1)"WoW:"Bell"[2013]"(2)"SampleSize(LogScale)SampleSizeofMMORPGStudiesClosest: 136,047Us: 6 (12) Million13
  • 40. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Research Questions14
  • 41. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Research Questions1. Can we cluster characters into profilesbased on the type of goals that theycomplete in game?14
  • 42. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Research Questions1. Can we cluster characters into profilesbased on the type of goals that theycomplete in game?2. Do characters play profile evolve as theylevel?14
  • 43. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Research Questions1. Can we cluster characters into profilesbased on the type of goals that theycomplete in game?2. Do characters play profile evolve as theylevel?3. Do characters with different play profilesplay through the game content at differentrates?14
  • 44. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013RQ1: Creating PlayerProfiles15
  • 45. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013RQ1: Creating PlayerProfiles• Within WoW, players completeAchievements15
  • 46. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013RQ1: Creating PlayerProfiles• Within WoW, players completeAchievements• Our dataset contains each achievementeach player earns, with a timestamp15
  • 47. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013RQ1: Creating PlayerProfiles• Within WoW, players completeAchievements• Our dataset contains each achievementeach player earns, with a timestamp• Profile players based on the types ofachievements they complete15
  • 48. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013CategorizingAchievements• Draw on motivation categorizationsdescribed byYeeAchievement Social ImmersionAdvancement Socializing DiscoveryMechanics Relationship Role-PlayingCompetition Teamwork CustomizationEscapismCategorization of play motivations,Yee16
  • 49. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013CategorizingAchievements17
  • 50. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013CategorizingAchievements• 1000 Conquest Points17
  • 51. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013CategorizingAchievements• 1000 Conquest Points• Earn 1000 conquest points -> Achievement17
  • 52. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013CategorizingAchievements• 1000 Conquest Points• Earn 1000 conquest points -> Achievement• Archavon the Stone Watcher17
  • 53. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013CategorizingAchievements• 1000 Conquest Points• Earn 1000 conquest points -> Achievement• Archavon the Stone Watcher• Defeat Archavon the StoneWatcher in 10 player mode-> Social17
  • 54. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013CategorizingAchievements• 1000 Conquest Points• Earn 1000 conquest points -> Achievement• Archavon the Stone Watcher• Defeat Archavon the StoneWatcher in 10 player mode-> Social• It’s Happy Hour Somewhere17
  • 55. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013CategorizingAchievements• 1000 Conquest Points• Earn 1000 conquest points -> Achievement• Archavon the Stone Watcher• Defeat Archavon the StoneWatcher in 10 player mode-> Social• It’s Happy Hour Somewhere• Drink 25 different types of beverages -> Immersion17
  • 56. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013CategorizingAchievements• 1000 Conquest Points• Earn 1000 conquest points -> Achievement• Archavon the Stone Watcher• Defeat Archavon the StoneWatcher in 10 player mode-> Social• It’s Happy Hour Somewhere• Drink 25 different types of beverages -> Immersion• Arrested Development17
  • 57. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013CategorizingAchievements• 1000 Conquest Points• Earn 1000 conquest points -> Achievement• Archavon the Stone Watcher• Defeat Archavon the StoneWatcher in 10 player mode-> Social• It’s Happy Hour Somewhere• Drink 25 different types of beverages -> Immersion• Arrested Development• Allow all three of Corla’s zealots to evolve, then defeatCorla after slaying the evolved zealots in BlackrockCaverns on Heroic Difficulty -> All three17
  • 58. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Four Distinct PlayerProfilesGeneralists Achievement Loners SocialistsSize (Millionsof players)SocialImmersionAchievement1.6 1.4 1 112% ± 6 7% ± 8 1% ± 3 28% ± 638% ± 6 20% ± 7 38% ± 29 31% ± 566% ± 4 87% ± 6 35% ± 24 61% ± 418
  • 59. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013RQ2:Achievements perlevel0"20"40"60"80"100"120"140"160"180"0(9"10(19"20(29"30(39"40(49"50(59"60(69"70(79"80(84"85"NumberofAchievements2Level2Achievement"Immersion"Social"19
  • 60. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013RQ2:Achievements perlevel0"20"40"60"80"100"120"140"160"180"0(9"10(19"20(29"30(39"40(49"50(59"60(69"70(79"80(84"85"NumberofAchievements2Level2Achievement"Immersion"Social"Mostly get achievements after finishing most game content19
  • 61. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013RQ2:Achievements perlevel0"20"40"60"80"100"120"140"160"180"0(9"10(19"20(29"30(39"40(49"50(59"60(69"70(79"80(84"85"NumberofAchievements2Level2Achievement"Immersion"Social"Very few do social achievements early on19
  • 62. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013RQ2:Achievements perlevel0"20"40"60"80"100"120"140"160"180"0(9"10(19"20(29"30(39"40(49"50(59"60(69"70(79"80(84"85"NumberofAchievements2Level2Achievement"Immersion"Social"Had to be social to progress?19
  • 63. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013RQ3: Leveling byPrimary Motivation• “Primary” motivation - whatever the playerdid most• Look purely at time to reach level 85(maximum level)20
  • 64. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013RQ3: Leveling byPrimary Motivation0!1000!2000!3000!4000!5000!6000!7000!8000!9000!10000!Achievement! Immersion! Social! Overall!TotalHourstoLevel!Character Classification!21
  • 65. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013RQ3: Leveling byPrimary Motivation0!1000!2000!3000!4000!5000!6000!7000!8000!9000!10000!Achievement! Immersion! Social! Overall!TotalHourstoLevel!Character Classification!Players that “stop to smell theroses”21
  • 66. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Bonus RQ: Has Blizzardmade the game easier?22
  • 67. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Studying GameDifficulty• Modeled based on how long it takes tolevel• Measured in real-world time• Compare time-to-level from before Nov2011 to post Nov 201123
  • 68. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Leveling by Start Date0!500!1000!1500!2000!2500!3000!3500!20! 30! 40! 50! 60! 70! 80! 90*!Hoursbetweenlevels!Level!Pre-Cataclysm!Post-Cataclysm!24
  • 69. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Leveling by Start Date0!500!1000!1500!2000!2500!3000!3500!20! 30! 40! 50! 60! 70! 80! 90*!Hoursbetweenlevels!Level!Pre-Cataclysm!Post-Cataclysm!Abandoned characters24
  • 70. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Leveling by Start Date0!500!1000!1500!2000!2500!3000!3500!20! 30! 40! 50! 60! 70! 80! 90*!Hoursbetweenlevels!Level!Pre-Cataclysm!Post-Cataclysm!Abandoned characters24
  • 71. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Leveling by Start Date0!500!1000!1500!2000!2500!3000!3500!20! 30! 40! 50! 60! 70! 80! 90*!Hoursbetweenlevels!Level!Pre-Cataclysm!Post-Cataclysm!Abandoned characters24
  • 72. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013And there’s so muchmore.25
  • 73. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013What’s the most popularcharacter name?Name Count  (Normalized)Shadow 922Nightmare 839Nemesis 831Loki 772Hades 722Pandora 707Lilith 672Lucian 660Wolverine 657Holycow 656Luna 644Kratos 64226
  • 74. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013WoW: Social Data• Guild• Achievements (surprise!)• Co-completions of group achievements• Huge network of players• Over 100 million edges27
  • 75. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Contributions28
  • 76. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Contributions• Gathered the first massive dataset from theMMORPG, World ofWarcraft28
  • 77. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Contributions• Gathered the first massive dataset from theMMORPG, World ofWarcraft• Defined player profiles in WoW28
  • 78. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Contributions• Gathered the first massive dataset from theMMORPG, World ofWarcraft• Defined player profiles in WoW• Showed that these profiles are not static, andplayers evolve over time28
  • 79. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Contributions• Gathered the first massive dataset from theMMORPG, World ofWarcraft• Defined player profiles in WoW• Showed that these profiles are not static, andplayers evolve over time• Showed that these players advance throughcontent at different paces28
  • 80. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013Contributions• Gathered the first massive dataset from theMMORPG, World ofWarcraft• Defined player profiles in WoW• Showed that these profiles are not static, andplayers evolve over time• Showed that these players advance throughcontent at different paces• API Scraper: http://code.psl.cs.columbia.edu/28
  • 81. @_jon_bell_WiC May 14, 2013A Large-Scale, LongitudinalStudy of User Profiles inWorld of WarcraftJonathan Bell, Swapneel Sheth, Gail KaiserColumbia University, NewYork, NY USAPROGRAMMING SYSTEMS LABCOLUMBIA UNIVERSITYhttp://www.psl.cs.columbia.edu/enable(vt):to make possible, practical, or easy29