Second survey – Analysis of section 2

Section 2 of the survey focused around water in game levels. The responses to the survey as a whole are available here.

The aim of this section was to see if water was worth including in levels.

The first two questions were to see what kind of water (if any) unsettled them in games. The first was whether clear water in games unsettled people, and the vast majority, expectedly, said no.

However, a problem presented itself when it came to whether people found murky water in games scary. Here is the data:Murky water

I wasn’t sure how to interpret this and use this data – it’s presented a bit of a road block in my thought process. I’ve been assuming the whole time that “Ah, more people find this scary, so I’ll include this in my level” and “Oh, this isn’t as scary as I thought so I’ll leave this out.” But here, it’s almost a 50/50 split. Do I use water in my level, and potentially end up annoying half my audience with what they think is a pointless feature? Do I avoid using water, and potentially miss out on scaring half the audience?

This has caused me to shift in my thought process slightly – I’ll not include elements that are voted as not scary (As before), but instead of ignoring such close results, I’ll be sure to include elements of it in my level but not make it a central point, so that it may have a slight effect on the audience that finds water scary, but will not get in the way and be a pointless/boring obstacle to those that are indifferent to it.

Moving on, the next two questions were about player movement through water. The majority of players found walking through water, as well as swimming through water, scary in games (Though they found swimming slightly scarier than walking).

The next few questions were once again rating questions.

I wanted to see what situation people found scarier – Knowing enemies are in the water, knowing SOMETHING is in the water, and not knowing whether something IS in the water or not. All three were rated as fairly scarier, especially between knowing something is in there, and not knowing if something may or may not be in there, but ultimately it was the last option that pulled ahead, most people found not knowing if something may be in there, again, the unknown playing a large part in people’s fears.


In the closing comments for this section, someone highlighted that the fear of drowning can be scarier than enemies, and that having a limited air supply while swimming through confined spaces can be very scary.