GameRefinery’s Latest Report: What drives and motivates players the most?

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GameRefinery created a motivation model to help publishers and developers understand key player motivations and motivational drivers. By doing so, they can introduce gameplay elements that appeal to their existing players and attract new ones.  This report breaks down player motivations and motivational drivers with real examples of their implementation in top mobile games.

Here are some of the highlights:

  • Renovation elements are one of the big motivational drivers; they are found in every US top 100 grossing casual mobile games released since 2020.

  • 4X strategy and tycoon/crafting games appeal to players who enjoy optimizing resources and complex production streams.

  • Players who enjoy optimizing resources are most often between the ages of 25-44, but while men are likely to play more complex genres, like 4X strategy, women prefer casual tycoon/crafting games.

  • In the US top-grossing 200 list, around 20% of mobile games score high on the ‘Thinking and Solving’ motivational driver. These games include match3 titles, word games, hidden objects, and bubble shooters.

  • Players motivated by logical solving are more likely to pay for an option to retry failed levels and invest in longer periods of playtime.

  • ‘Exploration: Discovering New Worlds’ is another key driver in the top US 200-grossing titles, but implementations vary significantly across genres.

The report is also available via the GameRefinery website through this link.

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