Inside the Group: Investigating Social Structures in Player Groups and their Influence on Activity
Social features, matchmaking, and grouping functions are key elements of online multiplayer experiences. Understanding how social connections form in and around games and their relationship to in-game activity offers insights for building and maintaining player bases and for improving engagement and retention. This paper presents an analysis of the groups formed by users of the the 100.io-a social matchmaking website for different commercial titles, including Destiny on which we focus in this paper. Groups formed on the 100.io can be described across a range of social network related metrics. Also, the social network formed within a group is evaluated in combination with user-provided demographic and preference data. Archetypal analysis is used to classify groups into archetypes and a correlation analysis is presented covering the effect of group characteristics on in-game activity. Finally, weekly activity profiles are described. Our results indicate that group size as well as the number of moderators within a group and their connectedness to other team members influences a group's activity. We also identified four prototypical types of groups with different characteristics concerning composition, social cohesion, and activity.