Zynga chief creative officer Brian Reynolds of FrontierVille fame said this to IndustryGamers in a recent interview. Essentially, this is Reynolds' defense against critics of the metrics-driven game design system. Many, most notably indie game designer Jon Blow, consider this approach to game design exploitative and devoid of fun and creativity. According to Reynolds' words, working within the constraints of metrics actually focus designers into making social games better based on feedback. We're no game designers, so we'll take your word for it, Brian.[T]he numbers give us an idea of roughly what kind of feature to do because there are some kinds of features that are more likely to drive people to pay or to drive people to stick and come back a lot or to invite their friends or things like that. So you can kind of aim a feature at different things or different combinations of things, but then you still have to have someone to be creative to make it cool and to make it fun and to make it fit into a long term story that makes sense to people. So I think that the metrics are something that help us make the games better.
What do you think about the metrics approach to game design? Can online games benefit from more or less metrics? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.