Mark Nelson email@example.com Metrics and adaptation Fall 2013
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Mark Nelson email@example.com
Metrics and adaptationFall 2013 www.itu.dk
Anything that can be recorded about gameplay
Used to understand how the game works, and how players experience it
Range of goals and techniquesQualitative, quantitative, game user experience, monetization
Some types of game metrics
Which player are the metrics about?
Choose variables to recordChoose frequency of recordingStore to a database
Run query/visualization laterAggregation, correlation, etc.
Spatial, in-engine metrics
Record positions of interesting events
Visualize frequencies, relationships, etc.Usually by drawing on the map
One of the most commonly used kinds of metricsEasy to record, clear how to visualize
Heatmap: HL2 deaths
Heatmap: TR8 in-game help usage
More in-depth spatial analysis
Heatmaps are 2d density estimates from samples
Can do other kinds of density estimates
Or, combine with qualitative data
Using a GIS?
Geographic Information System (GIS)
Used for aggregating spatial data in geography, urban planning, etc.
Some recent experiments with using GIS to analyze game geography
ArcGIS overlay (Hitman: Blood Money)
Analyzing the game to extract information without player data, or as a supplement to player data
Examples:Reachability analysisGame-theory analysis of a combat system
Recent area of researchM.J. Nelson (2011), Game Metrics Without Players
More on metrics
Annual conferences/workshops: Game User Experience
Engines increasingly come with their own metrics/viz infrastructureAnd extensions, e.g. in the Unity store
Can we use metric data automatically?
Offline or online
Dynamic difficulty adjustment
Adjust game based on players in-game behavior
But smarter than classic rubber-banding style DDA
Information on what player does successfully/unsuccessfully, combined with a model of interestingness
Use metrics information to generate levels or other game content
Offline: a kind of partially automated game designOnline: game customizationLike a more ambitious DDA
Togelius & Yannakakis (2011). Experience-driven PCG
Project can be done individually or in a groupIndividually written reports in either case
ScopeThere are about 6 weeks left in the semesterDepending on the project, leave ~2 weeks to write up a report
Kinds of projects
Engine investigation projects
ExamplesExpand your software 3d renderer to do solid surfaces and lightingImplement a character AI/scripting APIWrite a Unity plugin to do something not currently supported
Scientific investigation projects
Do an analysis/comparison of algorithms or techniques
PossibilitiesImplement several standard algorithms from a textbook (AI, graphics, etc.) and compare themImplement something proposed in a research paper and try to replicate or extend its results
Engine investigation projects
Take an existing game engine and dive into a specific part of it (physics system, AI system, navigation system, ) to understand and characterize how it works.
Possible topics of investigationWhat were the design goals, if known?What does this support well and poorly?Benchmarks, etc.