Narrative understanding questions can provide a framework for players to feed back on their understanding of the game's story, and are best used alongside open ended survey questions and interviews.

How to use these questions

Where possible, we try to provide survey response option scales that include:

  • Five or seven response points, in order to provide a reasonable trade off between granularity and ease of response,

  • A central neutral option,

  • Negative responses below the neutral response, and positive responses above it.

This structure allows us to assign positive, negative or neutral scores to responses (from -2 to +2, or -3 to +3) which can be helpful in visualising and communicating outcomes later on.

Some questions are scored in specific ways:

  • Where questions are reverse coded, this means that responses on the upper end of the scale are negative. If you want to compare these questions directly with other questions that are non reverse coded, you will need invert the scores.

  • Where questions are middle-optimal, this means that the most positive response is in the middle of the response scale. The lowest and highest scores here represent negative extremes: e.g. 'too hard' or 'too easy'.

These questions are not formally validated or part of a single tool or scale, so feel free to use individual items or modify questions for your current research goal. However, you might find more value in them by using them repeatedly, whether across multiple playtests, or in some cases, on multiple days on a longitudinal playtest. This way you can track changes to these responses over time, especially where you have enough players to aggregate responses.

Please indicate your agreement or disagreement with the following statement:

I could easily understand the game's story

Multiple choice (single selection)

1 – Strongly disagree

2 – Disagree


3 – Somewhat disagree

4 – Neither agree or disagree

5 – Somewhat agree

6 – Agree

7 – Strongly agree

Please indicate your agreement or disagreement with the following statement:

I could easily read the game's story text

Multiple choice (single selection)

1 – Strongly disagree

2 – Disagree


3 – Somewhat disagree

4 – Neither agree or disagree

5 – Somewhat agree

6 – Agree

7 – Strongly agree

Please indicate your agreement or disagreement with the following statement:

I could easily hear the game's story dialogue

Multiple choice (single selection)

1 – Strongly disagree

2 – Disagree


3 – Somewhat disagree

4 – Neither agree or disagree

5 – Somewhat agree

6 – Agree

7 – Strongly agree

Please indicate your agreement or disagreement with the following statement:

At points, I had a hard time making sense of what was going on in the game's story

Multiple choice (single selection)

1 – Strongly disagree

2 – Disagree


3 – Somewhat disagree

4 – Neither agree or disagree

5 – Somewhat agree

6 – Agree

7 – Strongly agree

Please indicate your agreement or disagreement with the following statement:

My understanding of the characters is unclear

Multiple choice (single selection)

1 – Strongly disagree

2 – Disagree


3 – Somewhat disagree

4 – Neither agree or disagree

5 – Somewhat agree

6 – Agree

7 – Strongly agree

Please indicate your agreement or disagreement with the following statement:

I found my mind wandering during the story segments in the game

Multiple choice (single selection)

1 – Strongly disagree

2 – Disagree


3 – Somewhat disagree

4 – Neither agree or disagree

5 – Somewhat agree

6 – Agree

7 – Strongly agree

Please indicate your agreement or disagreement with the following statement:

I empathised with some of the characters in the game

Multiple choice (single selection)

1 – Strongly disagree

2 – Disagree


3 – Somewhat disagree

4 – Neither agree or disagree

5 – Somewhat agree

6 – Agree

7 – Strongly agree

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