When developers plan and decide on new buffs and nerfs, do they gather information from online game matches, recorded secretly from their servers' data feeds and reconstructed / analyzed offline - for such data as player movement trajectories and popular paths, weapon preferences and gamestyle behaviour?

  • \$\begingroup\$ This is a yes/no question. Yes/no questions are not a good fit for our site, specially when asking what developers do, as there is not a single way developers handle things. What is the issue that you're facing in the development of your game? \$\endgroup\$
    – Vaillancourt
    Jan 12, 2021 at 20:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes, in fact many studios work directly with popular streamers. \$\endgroup\$
    – Jon
    Jan 12, 2021 at 20:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ Can you think of any reason why they would not do this? Who's going to turn down free insights into how to improve their game/product? \$\endgroup\$
    – DMGregory
    Jan 12, 2021 at 20:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Jon I'm not sure this is about players/streamers, but more about internal recordings of games. /shrug \$\endgroup\$
    – Vaillancourt
    Jan 13, 2021 at 2:00
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Honestly they employee a variety of techniques. Usually when looking into balance issues for simpler games (TF2 or Overwatch), they will track player statistics to see which characters are used and how well they perform (damage over time, healing, kills, etc). As you suggested they may even track player movements to generate heat maps for levels to see which paths are popular and where players often engage in combat. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 13, 2021 at 9:35


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