Missing: Understanding the Reception of a Serious Game by Analyzing App Store Data

By Toftedahl, M., Backlund, P., & Engström, H. University of Skövde

The focus of this paper is the design and player reception of a serious game called Missing released on Google Play with the intention of spreading awareness of trafficking and its impact on individuals and society.

The aim of the paper is to investigate how the game has been received by its players, focusing on its trafficking theme, by analyzing player metrics and app store data available from the Google Play digital distribution system.

The paper presents results focusing on three main knowledge contributions: the identification and characterization of the tension between the designer’s intention with a game’s mechanics and how they help to convey the message of the game, the identification of the complexity of finding relevant reviews relating to the serious theme of the game and the identification and characterization of the tension between the star rating and the content of the reviews.

One of the conclusions is that even a negative review can mirror a positive result in terms of fulfillment of the purpose. Read the complete paper:

http://journal.seriousgamessociety.org/~serious/index.php/IJSG/article/view/251/314h

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