We consider user retention analytics for online freemium role-playing games (RPGs). RPGs constitute a very popular genre of computer-based games that, along with a player’s gaming actions, focus on the development of the player’s in-game virtual character through a persistent exploration of the gaming environment. Most RPGs follow the freemium business model in which the gamers can play for free but they are charged for premium add-on amenities. As with other freemium products, RPGs suffer from the curse of high dropout rates. This makes retention analysis extremely important for successful operation and survival of their gaming portals. Here, we develop a disciplined statistical framework for retention analysis by modelling multiple in-game player characteristics along with the dropout probabilities. We capture players’ motivations through engagement times, collaboration and achievement score at each level of the game, and jointly model them using a generalized linear mixed model (glmm) framework that further includes a time-to-event variable corresponding to churn. We capture the interdependencies in a player’s level-wise engagement, collaboration, achievement with dropout through a shared parameter model. We illustrate interesting changes in player behaviours as the gaming level progresses. The parameters in our joint model were estimated by a Hamiltonian Monte Carlo more »
- Award ID(s):
- Publication Date:
- NSF-PAR ID:
- Journal Name:
- Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A: Statistics in Society
- Page Range or eLocation-ID:
- p. 102-133
- Oxford University Press
- Sponsoring Org:
- National Science Foundation
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