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Interviews: What I learned from you

Nov 2, 2020 | 2 comments

Over the past month, I’ve been interviewing a few volunteers with one thing in common: they are old school gamers and Lucasfilm Games enthusiasts. However, many of them haven’t played adventure games in ages, and those who have, it was in very few occasions (i.e. Thimbleweed Park).

The goal for these interviews was to learn about their habits in regards classic-style Point-and-Click adventure games as well as digging into the root causes that prevent them from playing more often. Before the interviews, I wasn’t sure wether this could be a reversible trend or not, but once I started talking to them and knowing more about their pain-points and needs, I began to realise that it could be a matter of product-market fit.

In other words: Despite most of them pointed to “lack of time” as the main reason behind, the reality is that today’s entertainment offer is huge. Most of the media and products available have been consciously designed to connect with our lifestyle. It doesn’t matter whether playing a good adventure game is more meaningful than playing Candy Crush, we are victims of today’s entertainment industry, whether we like it or not.

So, I came up with the following assumption:

“Classic-style Point-and-Click adventure games are not intended for casual gamers”

Note: This topic is open to discussion on Discord 💬

It could also happen that interest in playing these types of games is lost -despite the role that nostalgia plays- but that is not what I felt after talking to them, quite the opposite. This became more clear to me when I told them about the series of short Point-and-Click adventure games by Octavi Navarro: Midnight Scenes.

In my opinion, this is a really good example of a classic-style Point-and-Click adventure game addressed to casual players. A short and simplified version of the genre but it succeeds -in my opinion- on breaking with the past and offer something new. Basically, it keeps many elements from the classics (e.g. pixel art, mechanics) and gets rid of some non-essential parts (e.g. long dialogues), offering a format that it’s equally enjoyable and easy to consume.

Once I finished all the interviews, I gathered all the information I got from them (qualitative data), and I distilled it in order to get some useful insights and presenting them in a quantitative format so it would be easier to share with you.

As a final conclusion from this little research session, I came up with the following assumption:

“There’s a potential market for classic-style Point-and-Click adventure games targeting casual gamers”

Note: This topic is open to discussion on Discord 💬

Perhaps a good approach to re-engage with this “forgotten audience” would be opening the genre to more innovative solutions, designing shorter games or series, with simpler mechanics and making them more accessible (e.g. through App Store, Google Play, etc.), while still providing a high-quality product with reminiscences from the classics.

This might seem like nothing new, but I found particularly hard to find examples on this on the App Store, for instance.

So, this is what I learned from you:

1. What do you like from classic Point-and-Click adventure games that you can’t find in other genres?

2. How often do you play classic Point-and-Click adventure games?

3. Why?

4. Are you aware of new releases and the current offer in general?

5. Where do you go when looking for Point-and-Click adventure games?

6. Do you think classic Point-and-Click adventure games are dead?

7. Why?

8. Have you ever played a short Point-and-Click adventure game?

9. What do you think about the concept? (After showing them a teaser from Midnight Scenes: The Highway, as example)

10. Would you pay for a game like this?

11. Do you like playing Point-and-Click adventure games with your family and/or friends?

📌 Note: The sample group consists of 6 male and 1 female candidates. They are gamers between 30 and 48 years old, either married, with kids, living with their partners or alone. Most of them are former players of classic Point-and-Click adventure games, and even though some of them have been playing every once in a a while, there’s only one active player among them -coincidentally, the only woman in the group.

NEW! Follow this Development Diary on Discord!

2 Comments

  1. Archison

    Nice post, and nice results! 🙂

    I loved this sentence:

    “We are victims of today’s entertainment industry, whether we like it or not.”

    • Guillem

      Thank you Luis! probably not the most ambitious research work in terms of number of participants, but it’s a first step and I got a bunch of meaningful insights 🙂 Perhaps the term “victims” is too dramatic. “Engaged users” is probably more accurate.

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