Catering to players’ need for gaming satisfaction

Scott Rigby on PENS (Player Experience of Need Satisfaction)

Does player satisfaction matter? Scott Rigby, founder of Immersyve, explains how the gambling companies can take advantage of the player’s need for game satisfaction to achieve their business goals.

Does player satisfaction matter? For Scott Rigby, it’s a resounding yes.

Rigby, founder of Immersyve, created the PENS (Player Experience of Need Satisfaction) model, which looks at how games are satisfying a player’s basic psychological needs.

“Those would be needs for confidence. We all have this basic psychological need to feel efficacious to feel like we’re growing, to feel like we’re increasing in our skills and abilities,” Rigby told “The second need is the need for autonomy, and that’s the desire we all have to feel volitional, that we feel like we are writing our own story and the things that we’re doing, we endorse.”

The third need is that of relatedness, which he explained is “a feeling of I matter to you, you matter to me.”

“When those needs are satisfied, what we find is we feel more thriving, and when we’re not satisfied, we tend to atrophy,” Rigby noted. “And because of that, people implicitly value experiences in games that satisfy these needs. As a result, they’ll play games longer. They’ll spend more money in those games. They’ll tell more people about those games. They become enthusiasts for those games. It’s a model that’s both satisfying people and also helps game development companies make more money and achieve their business goals.”

The United States is in the process of getting online gambling regulated, and a lot of companies now are offering free for play sites. For these companies, Rigby has an advice: create experiences to ensure player satisfaction.

“The reality is that those games are not free to play in the sense that you will actually buy currency that you can spend in the game,” he explained. “[Companies are] generating that revenue because the currency [players] spend in the game, [they] spend in order to do things like grow, satisfy confidence, open up new opportunities for choices, satisfy autonomy, help other people and connect to other people. In other words, I spend money because it’s valuable. We need to simply create more transparent models for people who are paying in order to have this satisfaction because that’s the things that they value.”