Obsidian does survey, shares results


As a lover of Fallout NV and Pillars of Eternity, I was happy to take 15 minutes to do this survey when the email came through. What I didn’t expect was Obsidian to share their findings, something that most companies wouldn’t really do I’d wager.

I really enjoy pouring over numbers and statistics, so this was a super intriguing read for me and I thought worth a share. Some interesting tidbits: players of Obsidian games that took this particular survey (this is a small subsection of people that chose to partake, which probably introduces a bias, as @Wiper explains below) are 92% male, they do not like casual and sports games equally, and small chunks of consistent DLC is a big no-no. Really worth a check out if you’re into this sort of thing.

Main thread: https://forums.obsidian.net/blog/9/entry-206-the-results-of-our-recent-dlc-survey/


I like them publishing the results and do think it’s a useful survey of attitudes, but I’d be wary of making broad interpretations about “players of Obsidian games” (particularly user demographic ones): as they note, this was sourced from a reasonably narrow selection of places rather than blind tested, and was an open rather than selective process - the people who will have chosen to respond to a survey broadcast through Reddit, backer mailing lists and and social media channels will not necessarily be reflective of the overall makeup players of Obsidian’s games as a whole. Indeed, I’d suggest that sampling primarily from people already invested enough in Obsidian to back their games/be active in online communities dedicated to their games is likely to introduce specific biases likely to result in a skew towards male players with preferences leaning away from ‘casual’ games.

As I say, I still think it’s interesting and worthwhile as an attitude sample (and did indeed take part myself), but I wouldn’t go as far to infer from it that 92% of people who chose to respond being men == 92% of Obsidian game players are men!


Yeah you’re right, I probably was a bit broad in these statements, didn’t think of that. Will amend the initial post to reflect that :slight_smile:


It’s a completely natural way to think of the results, it’s just something I’m overly sensitive towards (I work as an analyst so it’s something of a professional necessity)!

I also realise that I didn’t really comment on what I did find particularly interesting - while I wasn’t surprised to see non-‘core’ genres at the bottom of the preference list, the makeup of the top went against my expectations somewhat: RPGs I obviously expected to see, and strategy made sense in the context of Obsidian’s penchant for more traditional, strategic semi-turn-based rpgs of late, but I honestly didn’t expect action adventures to place so high, and was shocked to see graphic adventures placing so low.

Showing my own bias (and age), my love for Obsidian comes from their writing, and to me the bedfellow of the narrative RPG is the graphic adventure. To see them placing below shooters and survival games really surprised me; even though, given the relative diminishment of the genre (particularly through the '00s), it’s quite natural that it has slipped from many people’s consciousness, not to mention the genre’s general lack of combat (and in recent years a large portion of the genre dropping puzzles in place of a greater focus on branching narrative or environmental exploration) making it quite distinct.