The importance of sound in games.

Ahoy there. I am running a multiplayer game http://wilds.io that has about 300k unique players per month — I am surveying that group with google analytics to find anwsers for my gamedev related questions.

Results:

Experiment description:

A portion of new players experience the game as if there was no sound implemented. I am hiding any sound controls from them and reduce the volume to zero. Sounds are still being downloaded and played (inaudible) to exclude potential benefits of having less lag and reduced loading time.

Notes:

  1. Realize that this is so called IO game (massive multiplayer browser based game with instant access to the gameplay) and the sound is not really expected for that genre —hence the lack of audio can have a much larger impact if your game is a native desktop / mobile application.
  2. By mistake I have probed sound enabled against not downloading sound at all — having sound + occasional lags still wins over no audio.

I will be sharing more of my findings from time to time. If you think you have a good idea for the experiment leave it in comments section.