Does guts feeling more important than data?

This is to me an interesting topic that have been raised by a game designer that I work with. Unfortunately, since we are all working from home, we didn’t have the chance to dig that aspect all together but I have to admit that this affirmation makes me jump a little!

I think in fact that this affirmation is not true and not false at the same time. It’s all depends on what steps you are in your product development. Guts feeling is good at the early stage but you should be less guts feeling driven compare to being data-driven.

In reality, the sooner you put your product in the user’s hand, the sooner you will stop being doing hypothesis and the sooner you will be able to identify its real value. But it’s not that easy right!

Here are some intersting example:


You know Youtube right? did you know that the first iteration of youtube was a dating service based on video profiles?

You can find all the youtube history detailed following this link

The Flickr case

Do you have any idea of what was the intended first version of Flickr?

Flickr is an image hosting service and video hosting service but at first, it was a feature of an online game called “Game Neverending” where player can post images while playing*

This is just a few examples of success story where the final product result wasn’t what was intended at first.

Of course, there will be always places for guts feeling, some extraordinary people will have that capacity to innovate and bring something totally new to the world that we lived in. We can think a few successful examples but this is not the majority.

At the end of the day, my answer will be that you need both but not always. The biggest problem that I have seen with people developing products is that they do believe so much in what they are creating is that they consider more their guts feeling than data. This is a really dangerous situation that may lead some people to take the wrong decision and may have a huge impact on their product business potential.

Here’s one example amongst few that can help to illustrate my point

Some people on the production team believe (guts feeling) that users deliberately change their behaviour to exploit live ops events and benefits of an easy challenge to gets their reward. By doing so, they were at the same time ruin the new player experience that was facing a too brutal challenge from their progression level that they where. This was from their point of view, the reason why the new user’s churn increase since few updates.

Early high-level analysis indicated that the problem was present but the reason given by my teammate wasn’t real. In fact, if some player changes how they play to exploit the game, this was a marginal behaviour that we weren’t able to identify through data.

Our deeper analysis shown is that the identified problem suggested by the development team wasn’t the real one. In reality, the problem was different, the analysis showed that it was only a question of balancing and can be “easily” fixed by tweaking one parameter in the game.

At the end of the day, putting more emphasis on guts feeling that data may lead your product to underperforming and sunset sooner than expected leading to a negative source of revenue instead of a positive one.

If you like the article, don’t hesitate to add comment, share it and follow me!



Loot boxes linked to problem gambling in new research – LOL!

To be honest, I can’t understand how a virtual loot box can create an ethical problem and being considered gambling. It’s been a while that I see those kinds of clickbait articles going on and I am clearly lost, there’s probably an obscure force that tries to make the game developers being evil.

I mean how much a virtual loot box is different than a collector’s card pack?

Is it because people that are doing research are not able to give a real value to virtual goods?

How much does a Pokemon collector should spend to acquire the entire collection?

I mean by writing these lines,

Bitcoin a digital asset cryptocurrency value is $59k USD

The artist Beeple sold his collage for $89M USD

A crypto investor buy an ugly icon for $7.5M

Jack Dorsey sells his first tweet for $2.9M

Well, forced to admit that there are some people that value virtual goods and this is only the beginning.

I can’t understand how do people see loot boxes as an evil gambling mechanic more than collector’s card pack, they are the same and better than, at least, most of the games company will clearly indicate to you the % of chances that you have to gain every loot part, collector’s card pack don’t!

Don’t hesitate to comment I want to hear you opinion about that topic.

Collage sets record for Digital Art, Selling for $89 Million

A few years ago I wrote an article on Gamasutra about the fact that in the closer future, a digital artist will have the chance to sell unique digital art using the blockchain to encrypt the transaction and the authenticity of it. Well, it happens and in an unexpected way!

Everydays: The First 5,000 Day

It is now possible for a digital artist to sell their content on Nifty. The digital collage by the American artist Beeple Mike Winklelmann sold last Thursday “Everyday’s: The First 5,000 Days” become the most expansive NFT. A collectible asset that uses blockchain technology ledger to encrypted the uniqueness of the asset as a unique item in the world.

Personas vs. Jobs-To-Be-Done

This is a really interesting article from Page Laubherimer about a methodology called jobs to be done that focus on users’ problems and needs for creating a persona that can be used as a reference when creating a new game or a new service.

I personally use the personas technique in some of the games that we have produced over the past few years and I am sold to it. Every time we have to use it, we have seen benefits in our design decision making, a better understanding of what we should do to please our target audience and each time the game works well in terms of KPI.


In fact, I have seen multiple video games company investing millions of dollars without having any idea what was their target audience. I always find it surprising to do so but!

I know that the personas technique isn’t unanimous to everyone one but I always think that this is better than nothing!

Here’s is the link to the article from Page Laubheimer where you will have a more detailed explanation about the Jobs-To-Be-Done technique that he proposed.

I do personally really like the conclusion of the article. Don’t hesitate to drop a comment and share it with your colleagues. If you enjoy it, smash the follow us button!

Regulars: The Impact of Great Technology on User Engagement

Happy new year!

I found an interesting video to watch from Jeff Howell, CTO of Kabam where he discusses the impact of great technology on user engagement in gaming. It’s a 24:00 video that worth to be watching if you are interested in in-game performance and development. The video has been uploaded 3 years ago and Kabam seems to be already at that time far ahead compared to other game studios.

Enjoy the watch and follow us on Facebook and don’t hesitate to add comments below about that video

Source: Youtube

Webinar: How COVID-19 has changed consumer behavior on mobile forever

App Annie to present a webinar on Tuesday, August 2020 about the impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on consumer behavior on mobile. They also state in the title that these changes will affect consumer behavior forever.

Source: Appannie

That sounds intriguing even do that the webinar won’t be entirely about the gaming aspect on mobile, it’s always good to have a clear understanding of how a global situation may affect the way that people interact with their mobile devices.

Here is the link to the registration form

Understand audiences and designing better mobile games

Facebook gaming partnership Facebook IQ and Game Raffinery to present an interesting report about understanding audiences and designing better mobile games.

Image credits: Facebook

If you are in mobile game development, there’s a lot of useful insight that you can find in that report. Here’s the link to the Game Raffinery form that you can fill up to get access ot the full report!

Apple stops Microsoft’s XCloud gaming app.

Nice read that I wanted to share with all of you about Apple position to stops Microsoft’s XCloud gaming app to be published on the app store. This app will allow gamers to live-stream from the cloud and play console games on their mobile devices.

Image credits: Microsoft

Like Lucas Matney mention in his article, Apple has become a major video game company that not only some gamers don’t even consider. Apple has a huge influence on the video game ecosystem and that decision may be impactful.

On the other hand, we can clearly understand their decision that makes a lot of sense from a business standpoint, but I personally see more apple as a game publisher than a video game company.

Read the full article here