IDC announced the results of a regional survey exploring the likes and dislikes of online gamers in Asia. A major insight from the survey was that Asian online gamers see bullying of weaker players and rudeness of other players as the biggest negatives for their online gaming experiences. The survey is the third round of a series of surveys that IDC is conducting in 2008 to evaluate the impact of Web 2.0 on Asian enterprises and consumers.
On average, more than 64% of the respondents named “bullying of new or weaker players” as a major dislike about online gaming and more than 70% mentioned “players who are rude”. Online bullying and rudeness of other players were especially an issue among all Chinese and young Singaporean gamers who participated in the research.
“The social aspect of the online gaming experience is at the center of what draws Asian gamers online”, said Claus Mortensen, Principal, IDC Asia/Pacific Emerging Technologies Research. “But while the social experience of interacting with other players and making friends online are a main driver for young gamers, online gaming environments can also be a tough and rough world to enter – and bullying of weaker players by stronger players appears to be a serious problem. So what we are seeing is that social issues are outweighing technical issues when it comes to good gaming experiences.”
The survey showed that, while most players find online games rewarding and exciting in their own right, the social aspects of the experience are becoming extremely important. More than 50% of the respondents mentioned “meeting other gamers online” as an important element in the online gaming experience – especially among younger gamers. On average, the respondents said they had made 26 friends online. For gamers below age 25, this number was as high as 28 friends.
“Online gaming is often mentioned as an opportunity to meet friends online,” Mortensen said. “And friends who meet through online games often become connected through other media as well. More than 60% of the respondents said they also interacted with these friends either in person or through other online platforms such as Social Networking sites.”
IDC conducted the web-based survey among 664 Asian online gamers in August 2008 across six markets (China, Korea, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan and Vietnam). The survey also sheds insight into buying trends and preferences of young gamers when buying virtual items and services online.
IDC will present further details about this survey in an upcoming report, and to key industry players at the Asia/Pacific Gaming Marketplace Forum on September 17, 2008 in Singapore. This forum, which is sponsored by Leipziger Messe International (LMI) Asia Pte Ltd. and supported by Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore, kicks off the Games Convention Asia (GCA) and Games Convention Asia Conference (GCAC) 2008.