Inside the group: Investigating social structures in player groups and their influence on activity

Michael H. Schiller, Günter Wallner*, Christopher Schinnerl, Alexander Monte Calvo, Johanna Pirker, Rafet Sifa, Anders Drachen

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Abstract

Social features, matchmaking, and grouping functions are key elements of online multiplayer experiences. Understanding how social connections form in and around games and their relationship to in-game activity offers insights for building and maintaining player bases and for improving engagement and retention. This paper presents an analysis of the groups formed by users of the the100.io-a social matchmaking website for different commercial titles, including Destiny on which we focus in this paper. Groups formed on the100.io can be described across a range of social network related metrics. Also, the social network formed within a group is evaluated in combination with user-provided demographic and preference data. Archetypal analysis is used to classify groups into archetypes and a correlation analysis is presented covering the effect of group characteristics on in-game activity. Finally, weekly activity profiles are described. Our results indicate that group size as well as the number of moderators within a group and their connectedness to other team members influences a group's activity. We also identified four prototypical types of groups with different characteristics concerning composition, social cohesion, and activity.

OriginalsprogEngelsk
Artikelnummer2858024
TidsskriftIEEE Transactions on Games
Vol/bind11
Udgave nummer4
Sider (fra-til)416-425
ISSN2475-1502
DOI
StatusUdgivet - dec. 2019

Bibliografisk note

Funding Information:
Manuscript received December 18, 2017; revised March 13, 2018 and June 14, 2018; accepted July 16, 2018. Date of publication July 26, 2018; date of current version December 23, 2019. This work was supported in part by the Digital Creativity Labs jointly funded by EPSRC/AHRC/InnovateUK under Grant EP/M023265/1. (Corresponding author: Günter Wallner.) M. H. Schiller, C. Schinnerl, and J. Pirker are with the Graz University of Technology, Graz 8010, Austria (e-mail:, [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]). G. Wallner is with the University of Applied Arts Vienna, Vienna 1010, Austria (e-mail:,[email protected]). A. M. Calvo is with Bungie, Inc., Bellevue, WA 98004 USA (e-mail:, [email protected]). R. Sifa is with Fraunhofer IAIS, Sankt Augustin 53757, Germany (e-mail:, [email protected]). A. Drachen is with the University of York, York YO10 5DD, U.K. (e-mail:, [email protected]). Color versions of one or more of the figures in this paper are available online at http://ieeexplore.ieee.org. Digital Object Identifier 10.1109/TG.2018.2858024

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.. All rights reserved.

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