Quantic Foundry Gamer Motivation Profile

A few weeks back I was nominated by Lorraine of Games & Stories to participate in a new tag style post. The tag involves taking a gamer motivation survey by Quantic Foundry and then examining the results by answering several questions. I already have a pretty good handle on what kinds of things I gravitate toward, but let’s delve into how accurately that is captured by Quantic’s survey.

Also before I begin, thank you for the nomination Lorraine! I’m a big fan of her in-depth story analysis of the first Assassin’s Creed, which you can find the start of here. Go check it out if you haven’t already.

1) What were the results? Share the link, headline and the two motivation model graphs you received.

Action-Oriented, Persistent, Social, Grounded, and Expressive

A chart of extremes

Frostilyte’s Profile

2) How do you feel about your survey results?

I’d say the results reflect me fairly accurately. Story is almost always my lowest priority in games and that tends to be why I gravitate toward mechanically compelling experiences as opposed to narrative ones. Mastery being the highest rated category also makes a lot of sense as that is largely why I’ll play a game for extended periods of time. I didn’t put over 500 hours into Monster Hunter: World to get better loot – it was almost entirely to get better at playing the game.

I have to admit I am a little surprised with how high design is scored. I think this category encompasses skill builds as well as character aesthetics, which would go a long ways in explaining why the score is so high. Thinking about the “meta-game” is another aspect of depth, which gives games a lot of longevity for me.

3) Which category is the most accurate and least accurate?

Most Accurate: Immersion

Immersion in games is weird because it won’t happen for me unless I find the game enjoyable to play. You can have the best writing in the world, but without gameplay to back it up I’ll constantly be reminded that I’m playing a game, one that I’m probably not enjoying that much. Because of this, both the “fantasy” (world building) and story aspects of video games end up becoming a secondary concern. Once I’m invested in the gameplay I become more receptive to these elements as I’ll be entirely focused on whatever I’m playing. Story by itself though? That doesn’t do anything for me.

Least Accurate: Creativity

I previously stated I was surprised by the score of “design”, so I suppose that makes it the least accurate. I wouldn’t say it’s inaccurate as I do enjoy customizing the appearance of my characters, or building bases in survival games I just never figured I liked doing it that much.

4) Are there any major exceptions to your typical gaming motivations?

I can be won over by story-telling and story focused experiences if it’s done through the environment rather than entirely through exposition. I think the biggest advantage to this method of delivery is that I’m able to take in the story at my own pace, rather than having a bunch of exposition dropped on me. I get it. You really want to tell me how dangerous this area is, but can you shut up for a second and let me figure that out on my own while exploring it?

Another noteworthy exception as it features almost no gameplay

5) Do any of these motivations carry over to your non-gaming life? If so, how?

Yes. Mastery.

It’s not just games where I set goals for myself and strive to achieve greater ability – I do that with everything. If I’m still interested in doing something that usually means I have set skill based milestones that I’m trying to achieve. The one exception to this is work because I work for a giant corporation where my personal goals and the company’s don’t align, so neither of us are ever going to be satisfied with each other.

6) Which games in your experience best satisfy your gaming motivations and how do they compare to the “suggested games” list from the questionnaire’s follow up page?

Games with depth that are simple to understand, but difficult to master tend to be the ones that best satisfy what I want. Monster Hunter: World stands as a fantastic example as I started out taking thirty to forty minutes on every single hunt and I could barely play one of the fourteen available weapons. Now I’m able to do most hunts in under ten minutes and have working knowledge of how all the weapons play. That’s the kind of thing I crave – the ability to develop a skill even if it’s just a bunch of imaginary stuff in a video game.

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As far as the recommendations go, they’re kind of terrible. I have played two of the top ten games: Starcraft II and Heroes of the Storm. Starcraft has depth, but also has an incredibly high skill floor so playing it with any level of competency takes a monumental amount of effort. Heroes of the Storm is a lot more approachable, but as a five versus five multiplayer game it’s difficult to gauge how well you’re doing. The terrible stat tracking further exacerbates this problem.

The remaining suggestions all seem to have taken the destruction part of the action category a little too literally. Just because I like to kill stuff in games doesn’t mean it always has to be with a gun. I think the other problem is I gravitate a lot heavier toward niche, smaller games and even the niche recommendations on my profile aren’t niche compared to some of the games I’ve played.

There you have it. I figure those who have read a handful of my reviews will not be entirely surprised by the results. I tend to focus on the aspects of games that I find most important, which is mirrored in my survey results. I am also supposed to nominate some folks to participate. I don’t know if any of you have already been nominated, but would enjoy reading your results.

Kim – Later Levels

Quietschisto – RNG

Dan – Indiecator

12 thoughts on “Quantic Foundry Gamer Motivation Profile

  1. What? You prefer smaller, niche games? This is groundbreaking news and completely shakes up how I view you as a person 🙂
    I never would have thought that of you…I can’t believe it! Who knows, maybe next time you’ll tell me you’re Canadian or something like that!!! xD

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ah hahaha. Good chuckle for the middle of the day.

      Honestly while reading over the results and writing this post I had a similar thread running through my head. This might be something I could or should link as a “here’s a post to get to know me as a reviewer”, but anyone who has read even a handful of my reviews is going to know most of what this post covers. The results pretty clearly demonstrate where my focus lies while playing games.

      Also, I wasn’t sure if you were nominated already, but I’m very curious to see your results. Unless you already posted them and I missed them or forgot about them…in which case I’ll have to dig through your site. XD

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Middle of the day, he says. Ha! I already tucked the kids into bed. Not that I have any…should’ve seen the look on my neighbours face when I suddenly stood there…

        I’ve been nominated by Angie, and I plan on doing the survey. I wanted to post it and maybe one of the remaining Sunshine Blogger Awards during my vacation, but alas, I was too drunk most of the time. Or had other stuff to do (like puzzling my way through London^^). Or I just did not want to start the Laptop…

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Great write-up Frosti, and you even followed the format Angie wanted, unlike some of us! *cough*

    I love seeing these though, I think they can be pretty insightful. If you hadn’t seen it already too, the spectrum descriptions in this doc can be quite handy:

    Click to access Gamer-Motivation-Model-Reference.pdf

    I had a lot of trouble understanding why I was placed where I was on the ‘Achievement’ main category, as it was described at that level as about 100%ing things and going after all the doodads which is very much not something I enjoy.

    Breaking down to the sub-spectra and seeing it is made up of that style of ‘Completion’ (where I ranked at the 8th percentile, lol) and ‘Power’ (where I ranked at the 84th percentile) it made a great deal more sense. Further though this doc goes into what it means to have a lean toward one end or the other. Some of them are obvious, some of them seemed less so until I read them.

    e.g., having a lean toward a low score for Completion infers a preference for self-directed gameplay / sandbox experiences like RimWorld and Kerbal Space Program (incidentally, two of my favourites of all time). Having a lean toward a high score for Completion infers a preference for task orientated games and yes, even going for ‘all the things’ collectible style.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for sharing the pdf reference material Naithin. I hadn’t and that explains…a lot. Both on the high end and the low end of my individual score.

      Heck the low fantasy score makes even more sense when the description says that people in such a group would prefer an abstract setting and retro art-styles. That describes what my SO would affectionately refer to as “Frosti-bait”: a 2D, retro, pixel art platforming game.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh. Well I’ll go ahead and give that a looksee right now.

      It’d certainly be interesting to compare if your results have changed over time. Heck if they’ve changed drastically examining why that might be could be an entire article in its own right.

      Liked by 1 person

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