Gamers as Employees and Customers

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Overview of gaming and gamers to provide background for HR and marketers.

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Gamers as Employees and Customers

  1. 1. Prepared and presented for nGenera Insight:From Competitive Instinctto Competitive AdvantageGamers as Employees and CustomersJeff DeChambeauDecember 1, 2009
  2. 2. Examine the gaming experience Implications formanagers and marketers jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 2
  3. 3. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II (Infinity Ward) Modern Warfare II (Infinity Ward)Games are really big“Games are the new movies”“Games are the new movies” Ghostbusters (1.25M units) Ghostbusters (1.25M units) Batman: Arkham Asylum (>2M units) Batman (>2M units)Grand Theft Auto IVGrant Theft Auto IVCall of Duty: Modern Warfare IICall of Duty: Modern Warfare II$60-80/unit$60-$80/unit jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 3 Copyright nGenera 2009
  4. 4. Who are these people? jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 4 Copyright nGenera 2009
  5. 5. The numbers Frequency Daily Weekly Monthly Less All 21% 28% 27% 20% Gender 18-29 20% 30% 30% 16% Men 55% 30-49 20% 26% 25% 24% Women 50% 50-64 19% 30% 25% 24% Age 65+ 36% 28% 17% 14% Source: Pew Internet & American Life Project Survey, October-December 2007. n=1063 total adults, 18-29 81% margin of error is +/-3% 30-49 60% 50-64 40% 65+ 23% Household Income <$30,000 52% $30,000 - $49,999 59% $50,000 - $74,999 62% >$75,000 56%Source: Pew Internet & American Life Project Survey, October-December 2007. n=2054 total adults, margin of error is +/-2% jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 5 Copyright nGenera 2009
  6. 6. Spore (Maxis)Games are their own worlds People invest a lot (!) of time in these worlds Successful games are successful for a reason Best games share common design principles Gamers are likely to play the best games We can therefore talk about the “gaming experience” 6 Copyright nGenera 2009
  7. 7. Games have their own logic So does the organization!In games, this logic is explicitly and implicitly taught to the player Very specific rules and criteria must be met to win Winning is always the goal Gamers are therefore predisposed to following rules The games have to teach the gamers how to play and winLet’s look at an example of an entire game that’s a tutorial, Portal jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 7 Copyright nGenera 2009
  8. 8. Portal videohttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TluRVBhmf8w
  9. 9. Wired explaining PortalGames teaching gamers Present obstacle Introduce skill Confirm competence Increase challenge Combine & summarize Add to toolbox jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 9 Copyright nGenera 2009
  10. 10. Plants vs. Zombies (PopCap), GTA3 (Rockstar), NBA 2K10 (Visual Concepts) Legend of Zelda: OoT (Nintendo), Starcraft 2 (Blizzard), Homeworld (Relic) jeffdechambeau.com | December 200910 Copyright nGenera 2009
  11. 11. Team Fortress 2 (Valve Software)Optimize the fun Gamers are playing to win Other gamers are means to victory Camp, bait, exploit, hack How do you encourage supportive behavior? Games generate lots of perfect data Leads to “local optimization” and “optimal strategies” Few strategies are better than being the fastest 11 Copyright nGenera 2009
  12. 12. Team Fortress 2 (Valve Software) jeffdechambeau.com | December 200912 Copyright nGenera 2009
  13. 13. Bioshock (2K) jeffdechambeau.com | December 200913 Copyright nGenera 2009
  14. 14. Despair IncorporatedGamers fail oftenFailure is a core dynamic for all gamesGamers want to win, just not too easilyFailures resets strategiesEncourage new solutions & skillsAttempted in quick successionResults in a fearless, iterative approachSkills are mastered through repetitionExample: Braid 14 Copyright nGenera 2009
  15. 15. Braid videohttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uqtSKkyJgFM
  16. 16. Forza Motorsports 3http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kZPHswbgeuY
  17. 17. Counter-Strike & Half-Life 2 (Valve Software) Beyond the final bossCounter-Strike HL2DQ jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 17 Copyright nGenera 2009
  18. 18. Core takeawaysGamers are self-interested (maybe even lazy) Gamers have a need for speed Gamers demand engagement Gamers experiment (and fail) readily jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 18 Copyright nGenera 2009
  19. 19. Gamers are self-interestedManagers MarketersClearly define tasks and Help them win, and you win too“completion conditions” Don’t distract, annoy,Explain the bigger picture or detract from the experienceMake altruism a system trait Appeal to their vanityBeware of a “peers asresources” mentality jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 19 Copyright nGenera 2009
  20. 20. Gamers have a need for speedManagers MarketersGive them urgent projects Target them carefullyBeware the tension between Be respectful of their time andspeed and velocity succinct with your messageExpect frustration in response Give them an edgeto slow peers, processes,and systemsPresent tasks in series jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 20 Copyright nGenera 2009
  21. 21. Gamers demand engagementManagers MarketersThey are predisposed to Create engaging, meaningfulfollowing rules consumer experiencesCarefully open up feedback data Extend virtual experiences into the physical worldDraw clear links betweenbehaviors and results Extend physical experiences into virtual worldsRecognize wins publicly Offer “context aware” productsGive them a trophy case jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 21 Copyright nGenera 2009
  22. 22. Gamers experiment readilyManagers MarketersSet the scope and context Understand the core dynamics of how games workThey’re not afraid to fail, butfailure isn’t always “no biggie” Create campaigns that show gamers that you understandClearly specify what tools can their shared experience(or can’t) be used when solvingproblems Experiment yourself jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 22 Copyright nGenera 2009
  23. 23. Related researchGamers as employees and customers, January 2010, by JeffDeChambeauValve Software: Engaging prosumers, competitors, andcommunities, November 2009, by Jeff DeChambeauThe Art of Warcraft - Leadership, Metrics, Design and BusinessIntelligence for the Collaborative Enterprise, and RadicalDecentralization: Organizational Design, May and June 2009, byAlan MajerGame Time: Marketing Opportunities in Social Gaming, August2009, by Catherine Thorn jeffdechambeau.com | December 2009 23 Copyright nGenera 2009
  24. 24. Jeff DeChambeau jd@predacio.usjeffdechambeau.com

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