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24-10-2020 | Research | Issue 4/2020

The Computer Games Journal 4/2020

Video Game Genres and Advancing Quantitative Video Game Research with the Genre Diversity Score

Journal:
The Computer Games Journal > Issue 4/2020
Authors:
Rebecca Sevin, Whitney DeCamp

Abstract

Quantitative research on video games often reduces participants’ gaming experience to how much time they spend playing video games. Although appropriate in some instances, it often fails to capture aspects of the video game experience. Studies that only use time as a means of establishing expertise in gaming fail to capture how much a player is involved in different types of video storytelling, game rules and mechanics, social experiences online and/or offline, and many other aspects. Only using time as a measurement also introduces a bias against women, as they typically have less leisure time overall, reducing the time they might spend playing video games. The current study proposes and tests a novel measure for gauging participants’ experience with video games that includes their experience with various game genres in addition to time dedicated to playing games. The “genre diversity score” presented in this paper provides a better understanding of an individual’s experience with gaming as a whole while still providing a metric that can be used in quantitative research. To demonstrate the usefulness of this measure it is compared to measures of time spent playing, the use of a PC for gaming, and casual/non-casual gaming. The analyses indicate that the genre diversity score outperforms other gaming measures in various tests of predictive power making a case for it to be used in future quantitative or mixed methods studies on gaming.

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