The distribution of usability problems in strategy games revisited

Studenteropgave: Speciale (inkl. HD afgangsprojekt)

  • Jens Beyer Østergaard
4. semester, Interaktive Digitale Medier, Kandidat (Kandidatuddannelse)
Current research on design of game interfaces has identified a number of usability issues that affect the player's game experience. However, it is limited with studies that specifically identify the usability problems that are particularly relevant for specific game genres. In this master thesis, I address the limited research on usability problems of game interfaces in individual game genres. More specifically, this master thesis will have its focus on the strategy game genre and examine whether there are certain usability problems that game designers need to pay special attention to when designing and implementing the user interface in a strategy game.

Based on a theoretical review of the characteristics in strategy games and existing results in the literature, I expect a variation in the occurrence and share of typical usability problems in strategy games. In addition, I expect problems with control and response times to be more pronounced in the more high-paced real time strategy games (RTS) compared to the turn-based strategy games (TBS).  

The results of this master thesis do show a variation in the share of the different usability problems. Specifically, the share is highest for issues with artificial intelligence, control, visual representation and consistency. Assuming that the problems highlighted in the examined game reviews are connected to the game reviewer’s user experience, these results indicate that games designers should pay particular attention to these problem categories when designing strategy games.  

Furthermore there are partial support for the expectation that problems with control and response times is more pronounced in the more high-paced real time strategy games since a clear difference in only evident in connection to the control problem category. Nonetheless, my distinction reveals that there are several other differences in the share of problems, depending on whether the game is RTS or TBS. This indicates that it is also necessary for game designers to distinguish between real-time and turn-based, as there is a plausible variation in the usability problems that occur in the two sub-genres of strategy games.
Udgivelsesdato19 okt. 2017
Antal sider48
ID: 263676047