The digital game industry has actively integrated data-driven methods into its core processes. This interview-based study shows how game industry professionals perceive the role of data as part of their everyday work. Analysing the data-related notions and negotiations helps to explicate how mainstream data imaginaries are both reproduced and challenged in the different phases and contexts of game making. The analysis is divided into the following themes: data is everywhere, data is messy, data is constructed and data redefines creativity. The qualitative inquiry shows how the meaning of game data cannot be reduced to individual metrics or analytics services, or new positions like data analysts. Data-driven development is based on particular values and assumptions, and it creates new practices, working cultures and conflicting forms of agency.
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