Metagaming, also referred to as meta gaming, is a considerably widespread concept in gaming. The term is frequently used to describe unconventional gaming strategies that players adopt to make their character behave outside of the actions and characteristics intended by the gameplay. But what exactly are some examples of such actions? And are there any benefits to them? Well, let’s find out by understanding the concept of player metagaming in detail.
What is Metagaming?
The term metagaming is derived from the prefix “meta,” which means going beyond something. In this regard, the core meta gaming meaning implies going beyond the set gameplay and rules. This includes applying strategies, specialized knowledge, or specific actions that go beyond the basic mechanics of the game.
This involves getting a deeper understanding of the game and how it works. Accordingly, it can enable players to consider factors that may be otherwise ignored or what is visible at a single glance.
Types of Metagaming Strategies in Different Kinds of Games
It is a common misconception that metagaming is possible only in the case of role-playing games. However, there are 3 different types of such actions, which can be applied in both mobile games as well as meta gaming esports.
This type takes place when you actively use information gained from external sources to perform better in the game. This can include using walkthroughs to clear a round in strategy or puzzle games or forming teams in MOBAs and RPGs based on externally gained information for a sure-shot chance at succeeding.
The implicit type involves applying similar strategies intended to win. However, this is based on your understanding of the gameplay and the opponent, rather than seeking assistance from external sources. This involves studying the attack pattern of your opponent in multiplayer games to create your winning strategy.
Not all metagame incidents occur intentionally – some can be unintentional. A meta gaming example of this type can be if you unintentionally play a combo of moves in a simulation, MOBA, or sports game that is known to be effective but you did so unintentionally.
Benefits of Using Such Strategies
There are many benefits of such strategies for both players and developers of such games. In the case of players, they can
- Gain a more comprehensive understanding of the gameplay,
- Make their playing pattern more adaptable to different situations,
- Gain benefits that would not have otherwise been available, such as earning in-game currency, and
- Engage more effectively with complex strategies.
Similarly, in the case of developers, metagaming can help them
- Gain valuable insights regarding their gameplay and how players are interacting with the game,
- Identify bugs and potential areas of improvement,
- Increase game performance by increasing playtime and retaining more users, and
- Increase in-app purchases by indirectly controlling player behavior, among others.
Metagaming is more than just a trendy word, it has slowly become a crucial element of how players interact with the game. Regardless of whether it is mobile games or esports, this phenomenon can help a meta-gamer understand the game more deeply for better performance. At the same time, it allows developers to improve the gameplay, making players more satisfied and helping the games rank higher in the app store.