We caught up with gamerDNA's founder Jon Radoff for a comprehensive tour of this new feature and an explanation of how it works to benefit the current generation of gamers immersed in a world of overwhelming choices. Follow along just after the cut below for our impressions and more information on the Discovery Engine.
As explained to us during the tour, gamerDNA's new Discovery Engine was developed to help gamers realize that there are other games out there that they may enjoy. Perhaps you're playing an MMO right now that you love, but you know its not perfect. Maybe it has a few features that brought you in, a few features that keep you in and a few features that hold you back, as well. Your holy grail MMO might still be out there, but it just doesn't get the publicity that it deserves because it's not run by a major publishing company with millions in advertising revenue.
This is where gamerDNA's Discovery Engine hopes to help. It's not a simple Amazon-type list of what you last played or what you last purchased; it's much more comprehensive than that. Forget the 5-star ratings on your Netflix recommendation list; this dives much deeper into what you really want.
According to Jon, there are three main elements that gamerDNA uses to help a member discover their particular affinity:
- What People Play. This is a cut-and-dry list of games in your gamerDNA profile's history which is a basic foundation of what you enjoy. This is a compiled integration from Xbox Live, Xfire, Steam, etc.
- How People Play. This is mostly determined from things like the gamerDNA quizzes which determine what aspects of the game you tend to relate to the most. Sometimes people can't simply tell you what they want, but through a series of probing questions, the answer can be found.
- Why People Play. This is where the Discovery Engine enters the picture as it breaks down the concrete answers and digs a bit deeper into what a gamer really wants in a game.
On our tour, Jon gave us a few examples of how this works. Let's say you're a fan of sci-fi, but you're not sure what's out there. You don't want just any old sci-fi game though; you have specific requirements. Through this Discovery Engine, you can either navigate through a list of common features and attributes that appear in most sci-fi games, or write your own. Once the gamerDNA community continues to contribute to something like this, it builds up an enormous database of terminology based on actual player knowledge, not just shiny PR words thrown together to promote a game. These search terms can end up being unique to a specific genre, and ultimately lead gamers to exactly the types of games they're looking for.
Often times here at Massively we get contacted by gamers looking for newer MMOs that fly under the radar. Of course the triple-A games will always be where the majority of players will flock, but for those seasoned players looking for something specific and innovative, this type of feature seems fitting.
So if you haven't been to gamerDNA in awhile, or you simply haven't signed up yet, take a look at these new features coming down the pipe on Monday. Play around with the Discovery Engine a bit, take some quizzes, join some communities, and you may be surprised to find some new games you'll enjoy or people with the same interests as you.