Demystifying the First-Time Experience of Mobile Games: The Presence of a Tutorial Has a Positive Impact on Non-Expert Players’ Flow and Continuous-Use Intentions
Mario Passalacqua, Raphaël Morin, Sylvain Sénécal, Lennart Nacke, and Pierre-Majorique Léger. 2020. Demystifying the First-Time Experience of Mobile Games: The Presence of a Tutorial Has a Positive Impact on Non-Expert Players’ Flow and Continuous-Use Intentions. In Multimodal Technologies and Interaction 4, 3: 41. Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute. doi:10.3390/mti4030041
The purpose of video game tutorials is to help players easily understand new game mechanics and thereby facilitate chances of early engagement with the main contents of one’s game. The mobile game market (i.e., phones and tablets) faces important retention issues caused by a high number of players who abandon games permanently within 24 h of downloading them. A laboratory experiment with 40 players tested how tutorial presence and player expertise impact on users’ psychophysiological states and continuous-use intentions (CUIs). The results suggest that in a simple game context, tutorials have a positive impact on non-expert players’ perceived state of flow and have no effect on expert players’ perceived flow. The results also suggest that flow has a positive impact on CUIs for both experts and non-experts. The theoretical contributions and managerial implications of these results are discussed.