Social Network Games: Players' Perspectives

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    67 Citations (Scopus)


    This article presents the results of an interview study on how people perceive and play social network games on Facebook. During recent years, social games have become the biggest genre of games if measured by the number of registered users. These games are designed to cater for large audiences in their design principles and values, a free-to-play revenue model and social network integration that make them easily approachable and playable with friends. Although these games have made the headlines and have been seen to revolutionize the game industry, we still lack an understanding of how people perceive and play them. For this article, we interviewed 18 Finnish Facebook users from a larger questionnaire respondent pool of 134 people. This study focuses on a user-centric approach, highlighting the emergent experiences and the meaning-making of social games players. Our findings reveal that social games are usually regarded as single player games with a social twist, and as suffering partly from their design characteristics, while still providing a wide spectrum of playful experiences for different needs. The free-to-play revenue model provides an easy access to social games, but people disagreed with paying for additional content for several reasons.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)794-820
    Number of pages27
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 2013
    Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • Facebook
    • attitudes
    • experience
    • free-to-play
    • frustration
    • game design
    • gameplay
    • interviews
    • micropayments
    • motivation
    • perception
    • playful experience
    • sociability
    • social games
    • social networks
    • user study
    • video
    • video games

    Publication forum classification

    • Publication forum level 2


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