Haka and I had this really cool discussion about the Bartle test the other day and it got me thinking about its shortcomings as well as the bias introduced by some of the test's more ambiguous questions. You can take it here, btw. Then I found an article talking about personality types in relation to video games (not just MMOs, which I found interesting).
I have scored rather ambiguously on the Bartle test thanks to methodological faults in its wording, but on my most recent score I placed in the following order from most to least with significant ordering: Killer, Achiever, Explorer, Socializer. I think the killer/achiever part of the hierarchy is unquestionable and my desire for explorer/social quotient varies depending on how I feel at the moment.
I have scored very unambiguously as an INTJ on every test I have taken including some which I feel have fairly worded questions--because it has corporate applications, the MBTI is taken more seriously even though, in the long run, personality analysis is literally just generalization and does not usually predict results.
Thus I had a lot of problems with both the straight-up Keirsey linkages, in which they classify all rationals including INTJs--ie, the personality type most likely to be a mustache-twirling villain/mastermind--as explorers who seek and value internal structure and genuine interaction with the game over what I would consider the satisfaction of the other side of the chart in either form, ie, acting on the game.
What I intuitively wanted was to map out the corners, not just the vectors, so I was happy when the article brought up a study that did just that and produced a chart that I found more realistic. A merge between strategic and logistical makes more sense for me because it pulls together an aspect of 'exploration' in its pure form--that is, the seeking of knowledge about the game, especially at a high level--with a type of achievement that goes beyond the boring, logistical side of the notion (because I'm not interested in grind without meaning). I'm now still very far away from an outright 'killer' on the chart, but it's a distance that makes sense because I'm not a 'pure' killer according to this analysis.
So if you scroll through a lot of wandering in the woodsy stuff, you come to a chart that classifies game types and how they should appeal to different sets of people. Here's where I feel things go slightly awry.
Sure enough, achiever/explorers love non-open-world crpgs, mmos, and shooter crpgs (cough, Mass Effect). But...what about turn-based strategy games? I enjoy nothing more than a good game of Civ II or AC in which I...uhh...pretend to play at diplomacy, build up my empire, and then murder my opponents while perpetuating horrible atrocities and then pretending that I'm sorry in front of the UN...
Clearly, playing a TBS game straight up appeals to a different sort of crowd, because even when I'm patient enough to want a different type of victory, I don't jive with the "this is all really hard and how do I maximize resources when I play on a soul-crushing difficulty level" or the "let's play a Civ game that goes on forever!" crowd. I want to finish, I want to achieve things, but I also enjoy building my bases, naming them, and then viciously protecting them from the other faction leaders.
Fire Emblem is probably a starker example because you can't really murder anyone besides your own units. I love Fire Emblem and I've played FE9 probably as many times as I've played ME1. I love doing weird things like playing with the worst units in the game just because I can, making Soren into a mage evade tank who can wade into a vulnerable spot and annihilate everyone who attacks him, or walking around levelling my healers with their stupid healing powers which need to be on adjacent units.
Anyway, I'm curious as to what people think. Are the personality tools accurate with regards to yourself and the games you tend to enjoy/have enjoyed in the past?
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