Monday, December 05, 2005

"The Gaming Landscape" -Steve Jones

More Gaming, Learning, and Libraries coverage

“The Gaming Landscape”
Steve Jones – UI @ Chicago- Senior Research Fellow, Pew Internet & American Life Project

The Pew survey on gaming
market research on gaming tends to focus on game adoption and revenue
social science research tends to focus on social problem areas, such as addition, social isolation, violence

Three categories of games (not mutually exclusive):
Video games (consoles + tv sets, e.g. xbox, ps2, gamecube)
Computer games (e.g., pc only)
Online games (require an internet connection, multiplayer)

If you want to track gaming activity in the library – how do you break it down?
What we know:
70% of students surveyed reported playing video, computer, or online games at least “once in a while.”
65% reported being “regular” or “occasional” game players
100% reported to have played a video, computer, or online game.
27% said they don’t play games at all:
--20% “lack of interest”
--13% “waste of time”

2% cited a lack of electronic gaming resources
The resources for gaming are there
.5% cited unfamiliarity with games
More women than men reported playing computer and online games
60%women / 40% men
Same number of men and women reported playing video games
Gaming was ubiquitos among races

Computer games hold a slight edge in popularity
Computer games also have an edge over video games in time used
Daily, twice as many college students play online or a computer game vs a video game.

Nearly have reported going online just to play or download games.

69% were exposed to video games in Elementary School, 28% exposted to computer games in elementary school, 6% exposed to online games in Elementary school.

How do people decide what type of games they will play?
Deliberate decisions about the setting within which the activities take place.
Ex. Home and bored – play a video game (if you have the equipment).
Ex. Working on a paper – maybe I’ll logon and see whats going on in an online game
Ex. Waiting for someone – maybe I’ll take out my PDA/phone and play the game while I wait

When do they play?
41% after 9PM
8% before noon

31% - Parent’s house
27% - Friend’s house
23% - Dorm room
2% - Library

Does it impact their academic lives?
66% said no influence

48% said it kept them from studying “some” or “a lot”

Gamers’ reported hours studying per week match that of other college students (about 7hrs per week)

Games for learning?
69% said they never reported having exposure to video, computer, or Internet gaming in the classroom (31% have been exposed)
32% admitted playing games that were not part of the class, during class.

What do they want?
Realistic graphics, excitement, interactivity

Racing, role playing/adventure, arcade
Card games were the predominant interest of computer and online games (e.g., solitaire)
(That’s an interesting finding)

Integration into other activities. Gaming is not just an activity unto itself. (multitasking)
-Play while visiting friends or IM’ing, as a distraction from doing other work, when “bored” regardless of setting.

Gaming does not seem to be a “pure behavior”, that is, it’s not the only thing they will be doing.

(Just before I left for the airport, my wife and I were “killing” time by playing Star Wars Battlefront 2. Even when her mom got there to go with us, we still finished the game before we left).


Younger are more likely to play games.

As the age of faculty goes up, likelihood they have had game experience goes down.

Is there a “verge”? Will teachers become products of the games they played?

Is there a “gaming divide”?

Higher incomes = higher likelihood of gaming

Race does not seem to factor into this

(Again, this is a place where gaming in libraries could help bridge that divide and introduce people to the culture of gaming)




What would this look like?

What will make a difference?
-Global high-speed networks

-Culture and language – what about “cross-cultural game trainers”? Learning to work with other cultures in games.

-Public support



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