The User State

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The user state is the unsung hero of game analytics. People spend countless hours looking at dashboards from reporting tables, analysing datasets built from purchases and session events but the user state is only remembered when some vital piece of information about the user wasn’t added to it.

Still the users state is central to a well built analytics system, especially if we are building your own in house.

So what is it? And why does it matter? Continue reading

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Mastering The Player Lifecycle

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It’s been almost two months since I started the blog and began writing about The Player Lifecycle. Next I will write about how to set up your game analytics stack and The Player Lifecycle has a central role, moving from a theoretical context to a practical one. Continue reading

Engagement 101

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Engagement is the most misunderstood and complex part of game analytics. The reason for this is that engagement is about fun and fun is something very difficult to infer. Average session length (measured in short units of time) and average session frequency (measured in a number of daily sessions per user) are often the metrics used to measure engagement. If we think about retention on a user count basis it is easy to see engagement as a session count and/or length basis. After all, the frequency at which players return and the amount of time they spend in the game should be good indicators of this, right?

As I see it, the difference between retention and engagement is not a matter of differentiating users from sessions. Retention is about returning to the game. Engagement is about interacting with it meaningfully. Sessions alone won’t tell you if players are having fun. Let me tell you a true story that will illustrate it perfectly. Although the story is a true one, data are illustrative.

Continue reading