Measuring the impact of game controllers on player experience in FPS games

Gerling, K., Klauser, M., and Niesenhaus, J. (2011). Proceedings of the 15th International Academic MindTrek Conference : Envisioning Future Media Environments (MindTrek ’11). New York: ACM.

Abstract

An increasing amount of games is released on multiple platforms, and game designers face the challenge of integrating different interaction paradigms for console and PC users while keeping the core mechanics of a game. However, little research has addressed the influence of game controls on player experience. In this paper, we examine the impact of mouse and keyboard versus gamepad control in first-person shooters using the PC and PlayStation 3 versions of Battlefield: Bad Company 2. We conducted a study with 45 participants to compare player experience and game usability issues of participants who had previously played similar games on one of the respective gaming systems, while also exploring the effects of players being forced to switch to an unfamiliar platform. The results show that players switching to a new platform experience more usability issues and consider themselves more challenged, but report an equally positive overall experience as players on their comfort platform.

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