The last decade has witnessed the rise of big data in game development as the increasing proliferation of Internet-enabled gaming devices has made it easier than ever before to collect large amounts of player-related data. At the same time, the emergence of new business models and the diversification of the player base have exposed a broader potential audience, which attaches great importance to being able to tailor game experiences to a wide range of preferences and skill levels. This, in turn, has led to a growing interest in data mining techniques, as they offer new opportunities for deriving actionable insights to inform game design, to ensure customer satisfaction, to maximize revenues, and to drive technical innovation. By now, data mining and analytics have become vital components of game development. The amount of work being done in this area nowadays makes this an ideal time to put together a book on this subject.

Data Analytics Applications in Gaming and Entertainment seeks to provide a cross section of current data analytics applications in game production. It is intended as a companion for practitioners, academic researchers, and students seeking knowledge on the latest practices in game data mining. The chapters have been chosen in such a way as to cover a wide range of topics and to provide readers with a glimpse at the variety of applications of data mining in gaming. A total of 25 authors from industry and academia have contributed 12 chapters covering topics such as player profiling, approaches for analyzing player communities and their social structures, matchmaking, churn prediction and customer lifetime value estimation, communication of analytical results, and visual approaches to game analytics. This book’s perspectives and concepts will spark heightened interest in game analytics and foment innovative ideas that will advance the exciting field of online gaming and entertainment.

chapter Chapter 1|14 pages

A Brief Overview of Data Mining and Analytics in Games

ByGünter Wallner

chapter Chapter 2|18 pages

Evaluating Gamer Achievements to Understand Player Behavior

ByThomas Apperley, Enrico Gandolfi

chapter Chapter 3|15 pages

Building Matchmaking Systems

ByAlex Zook

chapter Chapter 4|30 pages

A Data Science Approach to Exploring Hero Roles in Multiplayer Online Battle Arena Games

ByChoong-Soo Lee, Ivan Ramler

chapter Chapter 5|29 pages

Predicting Customer Lifetime Value in Free-to-Play Games

ByPaolo Burelli

chapter Chapter 6|32 pages

Advanced Data Science Models for Player Behavioral Prediction

ByÁfrica Periáñez, Anna Guitart, Pei Pei Chen, Ana Fernández del Río

chapter Chapter 7|27 pages

Integrating Social and Textual Analytics into Game Analytics

ByLareina Milambiling, Michael Katchabaw, Damir Slogar

chapter Chapter 8|14 pages

Social Network Analysis Applied to Game Communities to Identify Key Social Players

ByAlessandro Canossa, Casper Harteveld

chapter Chapter 10|17 pages

An Analyst’s Guide to Communication

ByNatalie Selin

chapter Chapter 11|23 pages

A Taxonomy of Visualizations for Gameplay Data

BySimone Kriglstein

chapter Chapter 12|30 pages

Co-Design of an Interactive Analytics System for Multiplayer Online Battle Arena Game Occurrences

ByQuan Li, Ziming Wu, Huamin Qu, Xiaojuan Ma