Friday, September 02, 2005

Different types of games players.

There are many different types of games players. It has been an issue in several places so I'll attempt to shed some light on it - or at least be definitively wrong. It's a very tricky subject as every single player out there will claim they are a mixture of types. To some degree this is true but from observed behaviour they almost always fall into one of the following categories.

Combat Players. I'll start with the type easiest to spot. These types live to kill and see every moment spent not in combat as literally a waste of time. Whether or not they concentrate on human or ai (artificial intelligence) opponents could be a subdivision but is not a major thing. No challenge is too great for a combat player, the harder the better and they will often go out of their way to make things harder for themselves just so they can beat it. Often loners online things like plot, storyline and continuity have little interest for them. Just killing more and harder things. This is not to say they will not work as part of a team. Many very effective teams are made from combat players and many many games concentrate on this single type of player.

Persona Players create complex personalities for their characters complete with histories, back stories and the hundred and one things that go along with it. Very little outside of this is important although they will participate fully in plot or storyline situations it will always be from the point of view of how their created character would react or be affected.

Social Players tend to spend most of their time socialising with other players. They will build networks of contacts and often will only be online when their contacts are about. Playing with friends is the primary concern for the social player but again they will interact fully with any storyline situations as long as they can do so with their friends.

Statistic Players care about stats. Any stats. Whether it's the amount of kills or having the most powerful sword of wootness or guns this is what makes them tick. They tend to be very thorough knowing chapter and verse on game rules and mechanics and every secret or hidden place in the game. That's where the sword of wootness hangs out. Storyline and plot devices matter to them, but only from the point of view of what they can get out of it.

Role Players. You may think that anyone who plays a Role Playing Game (RPG) is by definition a role player. In fact there are very few true role players out there. They will hover on every word of any plot dissecting and analyising every last detail. They will be extremely knowledgeable about all the major characters in their envirnoment and will frequently interract with them. They are the players who come up with the grand schemes and plotlines of their own. If they come across an under-developed area in a game they will happily make up things to expand on the original and it will always fit with the precious continuity. When another type of player "dies" within a game they may be back seconds or minutes later with the same name as good as new. When a roleplayer dies it is a major event, the loss of a virtual possession and you will almost never see the same person as the same character back again. Some people refer to this as hard core playing. It's not, it's just a role player playing to his or her potential. The only thing more important to the role player than their character is the continuity. That must be preserved at all costs and if it means dying to save the world then few will hesitate. Unless they are role playing a character who would hesitate of course.

Many thanks to Talzhemir who's Ideas On The Nature Of Role Playing formed the inspiration for this article.


At 10:55 am, Blogger Non of the Above said...

From Chess to the TotalWar franchise, the StratHeads are the players who like lots of little pieces to do their bidding across the various representations of battlefields.

At 4:21 pm, Blogger FuzzBuck Fuzz said...

I reckon my definitions above are cross - genre.

For instance, the strathead (strategy head) could be concentrating on their pieces going into combat (combat player), or they might be wholly concerned with building their forces to be the most powerful on the planet (stat player) or be more concerned on exactly how their leader (or even the indiviual soldiers) would be thinking (persona player), etc., etc.

So it doesn't make a difference on the type of game but the way it is played.

Does that make sense?

At 6:24 pm, Blogger Writing idiot said...

you missed me off the list lol. the dex player. fully intergrated player. any where any time any style. can do chief.
plus i wanted to be the first one to say im 'ALL OF THE ABOVE' lol. not like the other fella. sorry been waiting ages to get that in. you know who i am dont you non!
sorry fuzz am i spamming?
surely you wouldnt have me any other way!

At 9:31 pm, Blogger FuzzBuck Fuzz said...


U can spam here as much as you like ghost.

& by the way, you're a Persona Player, and a good one ;)

At 9:42 am, Blogger Writing idiot said...

ahhh but you havent played me on other games like age of empires. or even my loverly farcry. on farcry i become many players lol. destruction. yes i love my body count. sniper yes love that too. even just mowing people down in a boat hahahaha!. but yes in the games we've played together id have to agree. my chars do get more than the normal attention. i think i even created dexterous' childhood at one point. the story started at the age of 5.
dont know whats worse. creating such a history for him or remembering it.
never mind. oh just so you know there may be a ghost blog coming soon. ive thought of the name.

THE ART OF...........

catchy aint it. when i get it going i hope you like it.

At 4:26 pm, Blogger FuzzBuck Fuzz said...

er ... does that mean i can take your banner off testbed


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