What makes games fun?

Many different elements come into play when we think of what makes a game fun. Is it the rush we get from winning a match when we thought we was going to lose? Or is it dying over and over until we finally get enough skill in order to defeat that boss we was stuck on for so long?  It could be both or non or even one of those reasons. Everybody plays for different reasons and is subjective to each individual player. I have talked about on my previous blogs the different types of players they are and most likely you fit under one of those categories. If we look at Richard Bartels graph we can split this down into four categories.


Here we can see it is split into four categories – Explorer, Achiever, Killer and Socializer. Most players will fit into one of more of these categories, I for instance fit into the Explorer and Killer areas due to me liking games such as Fallout for exploring new places, and killer for such games as overwatch and battlefield. When playing games such as this I have the most fun, that is not to say that when I am playing a social game such as an mmo I am not having fun, it is just I am not having as much fun as when I am playing the categories I like the most. Which one could argue is when I am in the flow. A term used by Mihaly csikzent to describe the feeling you have of forgetting about all worries and problems, you are just fully engaged with what you are doing. I have talked about this on a previous blog so I won’t go into it. But I do believe partly games are fun because of the flow. Another reason are mechanics. You could find that one mechanic has you hooked such as the ludic loop, were you lose control then regain it, such as angry birds. This could be fun for some players and potentially not for others who do not like the loss of control. Which this reinforces how “fun” within games various greatly but just simply comes down to finding what type of player you are.




Image credit –

player types – http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/134842/personality_and_play_styles_a_.php


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