Around the world in 80 Days by Inkle Studios

Endings Won’t Be Remembered

Matt Sayer writes about some interesting commonalities between books and games over on games blog and magazine Unwinnable.

How often do we finish what we start? At Jellybooks we have used reader analytics in ebooks and discovered that the majority of books do not get finished, that is most book have completion rates of less than 50% (5% of books are finished by more than 75% of readers, but those are the outliers that really grip their audience).

Sayer has a great graphic showing that the same is true is for games, even popular ones.

Completion rates for major games

There are games like Rise of the Tomb Raider that are not finished by the majority of players. That sounds strangely familiar to us at Jellybooks.

Even short games that can be finished in less than 5 hours are not finished by most players according to Matt. Ouch!

In the games industry they still think that more hours equals more value. Well the publishing industry has learnt that lesson a long time ago. Extremely long books (War and Peace anyone?) can deter readers. It could be argued that publishers of business books haven’t fully learnt that lesson yet though. Those still tend to be “padded” with content beyond the central idea that interests most readers. Why? When it comes to printed book, the work still has to have a minimum thickness of 200 to 300 pages or people are not willing to pay full price. Well maybe the solution is to have more multi-author business books covering a specific topic or trend rather than one author padding out the same idea?

I don‘t have any idea what the completion rate is for the award winning narrative adventure game “Around the World in 80 days” by Inkle Studios, but I have gratuitously borrowed the title image from them, so in return you might want to check it out. :)

Exciting times ahead…

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