Game Choices

MMOs often ask us to make choices when we create our characters. Are you good or evil? Do you want to be in the majority or the minority? So I came up with a bunch of forced choice questions for players to see what the distributions might be.

I started with a question about game genre. I asked players to rate a list of possible genres. It wasn't too surprising that the Tolkien genre came out top as most MMOs currently are in that genre. The only significant gender trend was in the futuristic spaceship genre that was preferred by men. Of course, one thing we have to keep in mind with this and other charts below is that oftentimes it may be hard for players to imagine comparable games in genres that aren't well represented.

Pirates of the Burning Sea recently came out and I was curious how players would distribute themselves among the factions. Even though about half of the respondents preferred to be pirates, it's good to know that about the same percentage of players would rather not be pirates (and thus the pirates vs. non-pirates factions would be evenly matched at least).


In a three-part division of magic, nature, and technology, it was interesting to see almost an even split among the three. Women more strongly preferred the nature tribe while men more strongly preferred the technology tribe. The magic tribe came out even by gender.

In a hypothetical game where you could either be the vampire or the vampire hunter, the majority of players chose to be vampires, but women were more interested in being vampires while men were more interested in being the vampire hunters.

In a game that allowed a warrior role, a merchant role, and a spy role, respondents preferred to be spies, warriors, and merchants, in that order. Men were about twice as interested as being warriors while women were more interested in the non-direct combat roles.


In the classic RPG class types, we see a fairly even distribution. The stereotypical gender difference is also seen. Men prefer to be warriors while women prefer to be healers. There were no gender differences in the archer or mage classes.

In many games where there are warring factions, disparities between the faction populations typically arise. Given the choice, it was a little surprising to see that 80% of respondents would prefer the minority.

And finally, here's a classic trend we've seen before. When asked whether they would gender-bend, men were about 4 times as likely as women to create a character of the opposite gender.