Interview: Dmitri Williams, CEO of NinjaMetrics

on Dec 4, 2013
Amongst video game scholars, perhaps no one has been more prolific and had more impact than Dr. Dmitri Williams. Williams, a professor of communications at USC and CEO of game analytics firm NinjaMetrics, has fostered close ties with the game...

Q&A with Riot's Jeffrey Lin, Ph.D.

on Jul 2, 2013
As part of our coverage of this year's Game Developers Conference, I offered a summary of Jeffrey Lin's (Lead Designer of Social Systems for Riot Games) talk on research-informed design and his teams's work managing toxic player behavior in League...

Can games change minds?

on Jun 30, 2013
Pop quiz: For each of the following descriptions, can you name a person (fictional or real, living or dead) who meets the criteria? You have 30 seconds: go! Generous president Hispanic lawyer Visionary underwriter Female computer...

GDC: Riot Experimentally Investigates Online Toxic...

on Mar 31, 2013
Riot Games has gotten a fair amount of press in recent months regarding their empirically-based research on the nature of “toxic” player behavior in League of Legends.  As a result, I wasn’t surprised to find standing room only for Jeffrey...

Emergence (and some devastation) in Sim City

on Mar 6, 2013
I'll admit. I was one of those kids. I never had the patience to start from scratch in Sim City, to take a humble town to a bustling metropolis, paying constant attention to the state of my citizens and my budget. No, I would eagerly wait through...

Games, numeracy, and uncertainty

on Jan 7, 2013
Take a look at this word problem, quoted from Gerd Gigerenzer's Calculated Risks. Before you read on, try to come up with a ballpark estimate of the answer; what does your gut tell you? The probability that a woman of age 40 has breast cancer is...