Quantcast
Gearbox boss explains console fanboyism with psychology - Destructoid

DestructoidJapanatorTomopopFlixist



Gearbox boss explains console fanboyism with psychology


7:11 PM on 02.07.2013
Gearbox boss explains console fanboyism with psychology photo



Gearbox Software president Randy Pitchford's D.I.C.E. Summit presentation focused on how player choice is a good thing for games. In one of his many examples on how choice works in games like Borderlands 2, he touched on a bit of psychology, using the work of Harvard psychology professor Dan Gilbert to show that the choices players make become the 'best' choice.

Gilbert studies the psychology of happiness. In a recreation of one of his tests, Pitchford used swag from his D.I.C.E. Summit gift bag to show how this works. In this demonstration he laid out six items from the gift bag on stage and asked the audience to quickly rank them from most to least desirable. In the Gilbert test you would take the items away and then come back in 20 minutes or so to tell the subject that some of the items have been made available to participants. Asking them to pick between their third and fourth most desired items, subjects would pick the third from their memory of their earlier ranking.

Things become interesting in a second part of this test. Coming back to the subjects even later, after some of the memory of their original ranking fades, they're told that the original rankings were lost, and are asked to re-rank the items. What happens is that the item that originally was third down on the list, the one they now own, ranks higher, and previously higher ranked items are pushed down.

Pitchford explains that choice changes their thinking, and that the same thing shows in games. For example, when given a choice between two weapons with comparable power early on in the game, the player's initial choice becomes their 'best' despite its effectiveness ranking. The choice a player makes becomes the good choice over time, with the one not chosen labeled as the bad one.

Pitchford says that this same psychology can be applied to console fanboyism. Those limited to one console make an initial decision, and eventually becomes the 'best' one for them, making other consoles the 'worst' choice. By this, I was a Sega kid because my dad bought me a Genesis because I asked for it first. Later, I bought my own Super Nintendo. While I loved it, I was always partial to Sega consoles. My mind made my first choice the 'best' one. For the time, at least.






Comments not appearing? Anti-virus apps like Avast or some browser extensions can cause this.
Easy fix: Add   [*].disqus.com   to your software's white list. Tada! Happy comments time again.

Did you know? You can now get daily or weekly email notifications when humans reply to your comments.






Borderlands

7:00 AM on 04.09.2014
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel takes the shooter looter to the moon

Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel is official. The latest entry in Gearbox's shooter looter takes place between the original Borderlands and Borderlands 2, hence the Pre-Sequel moniker. The new game is based on the Borderlands 2 en...more



4:15 PM on 04.08.2014
Borderlands 2 PS Vita bundle available May 6

Sony has announced a release date for the Borderlands 2 PlayStation Vita bundle today via PlayStation Blog. The bundle, which marks the first release of the handheld's slimmer hardware redesign in North America, will be avai...more



2:30 PM on 04.04.2014
2K is bringing Borderlands 2 for PS Vita, Evolve to PAX East

Evolve. Now there's a game I've been hoping to try out for a while now. PAX East attendees will be able to get their hands on the Turtle Rock Studios-developed multiplayer game next weekend as well as Borderlands 2 for PlaySt...more



View all Borderlands






Back to Top




All content is yours to recycle through our Creative Commons License permitting non-commercial sharing requiring attribution. Our communities are obsessed with videoGames, movies, anime, and toys.

Living the dream since March 16, 2006

Advertising on destructoid is available: Please contact them to learn more