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Title:Designing effective hints systems
Author(s):Wang, Ren-Jay
Advisor(s):Fu, Wai-Tat
Department / Program:Computer Science
Discipline:Computer Science
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Hint systems
Player experience
Player behavior
Video games
Hint design
Game design
Abstract:Hint systems are designed to provide users with assistance with a complicated or difficult task. However, modern-day hint systems are frequently ineffective at assisting users, forcing them to consult external help. One flaw in current systems is that they fail to anticipate user needs as well as accommodate different types of users. In our study, we discovered key factors to designing an effective hint using a notoriously difficult puzzle game as our experimental object. We found that abstract hints are perceived as worse than no hint because they do not provide sufficient help for the player. In contrast, we found that concrete hints are perceived as more helpful, but ultimately that player experience attributes primarily depend on the characteristics of the game. In addition, we give players the choice to pick their own hint and find that it does not significantly alter player experience. We conclude our paper with a discussion on how we can apply these lessons to hints in non-game applications.
Issue Date:2017-07-14
Rights Information:Copyright 2017 Ren-Jay Wang
Date Available in IDEALS:2017-09-29
Date Deposited:2017-08

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