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Game Analytics: Where Do I Start? - Part 1

Posted by Greg Kathol

Oct 15, 2014 7:43:00 AM

The big data analytics revolution over the past few years has led a lot of businesses to believe that they need to implement some sort of big data solution. The downside is that many of those businesses don’t really understand how it works, or even what big data really is.

In layman’s terms, “big data” is defined as sets of data so large that they can’t be analyzed with traditional processing applications and instead require a more complex and multifaceted solution.

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Topics: Game Analytics, Mobile Game Analytics, Online Game Analytics

Solo Players 65.3% More Likely To Quit vs Playing with Others

Posted by Dmitri Williams

Jun 3, 2014 12:17:00 PM

Increase Customer Retention With Social Engagement

While playing video games solo can be fun, playing within a network of other gamers increases customer retention through engagement. This is a key metric for developers, who are looking to further monetize their games.

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Topics: Game Analytics, Game Development, Video Game Marketing

Ninja News Roundup: Social Gaming Trends, Big Data and the Future of Game Investing

Posted by Ninja Metrics | Blog

May 29, 2014 11:14:00 AM

Ninja Round-up - News for the week

The Biggest Trends in Social Gaming

The popularity of social gaming has exploded in recent years thanks to the growth of mobile devices. With cross-platform compatibility, playing with friends from around the world has become more convenient than ever.

Game market research firm Newzoo recently put together a report highlighting the current trends in social gaming and where they’re headed. Currently, players around the world spend 1 billion hours each day playing games (more than 5x the amount they spend on YouTube or Facebook) - and looking ahead, mobile gaming is expected to generate more than $100B by 2017.

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Topics: Game Analytics, Social Games, Game News, Game Industry

Ninja News Roundup: 2014 Gaming Trends and Buying Into Alpha Funding

Posted by Ninja Metrics | Blog

Jan 10, 2014 11:52:00 AM

Ninja Metrics Weekly Round-upWith the start of the new year and some exciting emerging technology from events like CES 2014, we’ve put together a weekly roundup of the best video game, analytics, and social-gaming news/insights. Take a look at a few of our top picks from the last week:

2014 Gaming Trends: Wearable Tech, VR, and AR at CES

Last year, Oculus made headlines by raising over $2M for its first iteration of a Virtual Reality gaming headset called the Rift. Earlier this week, the company made a return at CES 2014 by debuting its second prototype, call the Rift “Crystal Cove” - adding 1080p, an AMOLED screen, and several other features.


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Topics: Game Analytics, Video Game Analytics, Game Development, Game News, Game Industry

The Fruit Basket Factor: Rational Churn Prevention

Posted by Dmitri Williams

Dec 4, 2013 8:08:00 AM

All players are not created equally, and frankly, not all are worth keeping.

How can a developer decide which is which, and what to do about it?

There’s a very logical answer here that combines 1) the worth of the player with 2) the likelihood of them leaving. So first brief notes on those two things.

1) The worth of a player is their future impact on the system.

In other words, it’s their predicted future LTV (Lifetime Value). Looking at what they have done up until now is the next-best option, but it gives you no insight into how how their behavior will continue. For future LTV, we use a combination of their value plus their impact on others (Social Value) because we think it

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Topics: Churn Analysis, Game Analytics, Video Game Analytics, Churn Prevention

Do Analytics Help or Hurt the Creative Process of Game Development?

Posted by Dmitri Williams

Nov 20, 2013 7:11:00 AM

For starters, analytics are rarely used in pre-launch development, unless it’s the rare case where intelligence gathered from one title informs the next. They are more typically seen post-launch. When they are used in a live service with creative iteration taking place, they can be very helpful so long as the dev team follows best practices.

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Topics: Game Analytics, Video Games, Video Game Analytics, Game Development

Basic Statistics in 5 minutes!

Posted by Dmitri Williams

Oct 23, 2013 1:37:00 PM

I hated stats class in graduate school. Nothing made me feel dumber, faster. So, this post is dedicated to that full year of ridiculous, and I hope to now reduce the key points to a 5-minute blog post.

Regression. Sounds hard, right? Watch this.

Let’s say you’ve observed a series of events. Maybe it’s the temperature and the time of day. Maybe it’s the amount of people and energy consumption. Doesn’t matter. Now, you take the numbers from those observations and you put them on a regular X- and Y-graph.

Like this:

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Topics: Game Analytics, Regression Analysis, Basic Statistics, Correlation, Coefficient

User Research: Balancing the Left and Right Brain

Posted by Dmitri Williams

Oct 16, 2013 4:17:00 PM

“You got your chocolate in my peanut butter!”

So goes the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup ad in which two great tastes are miraculously combined, to the delight of partisans of both chocolate and peanut butter.

It’s not quite that simple in science, where the team of labcoats who really, really like chocolate don’t exactly get along with the team that likes peanut butter.

In this case, the chocolate is a proxy for hard numbers--experiments, surveys, big data. We call this quantitative research. The peanut butter is squishier stuff--observations, interviews and participant observation. Both of these approaches are valuable to developers, but what keeps them separate are the scientists themselves.

Why? This is a left-brain/right-brain issue. Some people are more drawn to the logical and others to the creative. If you’re a game or mobile app developer, you recognize that some of your staff are ace programmers, some are ace artists, and the overlap is pretty rare. This is true in every industry.

The quantitative stuff is almost always given more weight than the squishy interview work. After all, who can argue with numbers and graphs? Yet there’s a risk in avoiding the squishy. Here’s why.

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Topics: Game Analytics, User Research, Left and Right Brain, Quantitative Research, Chocolate and Peanut Butter, Qualitative Research

Video Game Analytics 101, Part 3: The Slightly-More-Advanced Bits

Posted by Dmitri Williams

Oct 9, 2013 6:59:00 AM

Now that you have the basics from the last post, you’re ready for the next level where we get away from the aggregate metrics and into areas where you can take actions, test, and see results.

Here we introduce the following concepts:

  • Individual-level metrics
  • Getting past averages
  • Segmentation
  • Predictive analytics
  • LTV and Social Value
  • Individual-level metrics

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Topics: Game Analytics, Video Game Analytics, Game Metric Definitions

Video Game Analytics 101: Basic Definitions

Posted by Dmitri Williams

Oct 4, 2013 7:02:00 AM

Here are the basic metrics any basic dashboard should have, along with definitions. These are the kinds of metrics that you would hand to your CEO or board to give a high-level view of how things are going. They’re simple, and best seen in the context of time, so the smartest use is to see their period-over-period change in a table or on a graph. More complex metrics are for developers, marketing and community managers who will need to dig deeper into changes. All metrics should be chosen based on the questions your business really needs answers to - see our Practical Metrics blog post on the subject.

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Topics: Game Analytics, Video Game Analytics, Setting Up Game Analytics, Game Metric Definitions

Practical Metrics: Setting up Game Analytics for Your Organization

Posted by Dmitri Williams

Sep 30, 2013 3:17:00 PM

Let’s talk about how, why or why you shouldn’t set up analytics for your organization.

First, do you actually need analytics? I speak with a lot of companies that say they want to be “data driven,” which sounds great (and is). I also talk to a lot who say they want analytics. When I ask “why?” I get a mixed bag. Some companies are getting them in place because they see others doing it. Some realize the need to work off of data rather than guesses. Few start where they should, which is with key questions based on their operations and their specific team.

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Topics: Game Analytics, Practical Metrics, Social Value

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