In Data analysis, Free to play, Games Analytics

Accurate dashboards are at the heart of reliable game analysis and are the starting point for any investigation with advanced analytics tools. Effective dashboards are critical to quickly identifying emergent problems, as well as providing a focal point for optimizing free-to-play game performance. However, in an era where the scale of player-tracking event data is not only huge but also highly accessible, it is easy to become swamped with charts and figures. So, are you being selective about the charts you’re using?

While the ability to dive deep into your players’ behavior is important, the insight generated is not necessarily for mass consumption. Do your UA experts need to know that your players struggle on mission 3 if they don’t buy the lightning booster first? …Probably not. Here are six of the best dashboard charts for keeping your game on track, that you can use across the whole team.

6 Awesome Game Analytics Dashboard Charts


Games need players to play them! The volume of players in your game impacts many decisions; the contrast between Daily Active Users (DAU) and Monthly Active Users (MAU) gives you a feel for which way the game is trending, and how ‘sticky’ it is.

2) Day 1/7/30 Retention

The key metric for free-to-play games; people can’t spend if they aren’t playing. Getting players into your game is hard (and expensive) enough, so it is vital to understand if they are churning straight away. Don’t presume day 1 retention is all that matters… day 7 is just as important.


Player progress through the first few minutes is often crucial to long term engagement. A typical free-to-play game might lose 20-30% of players within the first 2 minutes, so the First Time User Experience (FTUE) is the place where small improvements can make a big difference to game performance. Many excellent games have been felled by a poor or broken on-boarding process, so it’s important to get it right and keep new players happy.

Warframe-1200x322Warframe (PC/PS4/XB1) by Digital Extremes is a good example of a game with a good on-boarding process .

4) %Spenders vs. days since install / level /etc.

Once you are sure that you have a base of retained players, it’s time to work on growing your number of payers. While understanding the overall spender rate is important, it is quite often simply a measure of Retention rather than a diagnostic of the monetization capability of your game. The spender rate amongst engaged players is the key to balancing the game economy. If you can’t get 10% of players who have been active for over a week to pay, there is likely something seriously wrong with the game economy and/or the premium IAP you have to offer.

5) Number of payments distribution

The free-to-play model only works if spenders can be monetized multiple times; if you just want people to pay once, why not make a premium game? If the vast majority of spenders are only spending once, this is a sign of IAP ‘regret’ and likely spender churn – the death of a free-to-play game.


Finally, spenders need to spend. Understanding Average Revenue Per Daily Active User (ARPDAU), alongside Retention, allows accurate revenue forecasts and ultimately a measure of ROI and how it is tracking.


How to get these Dashboards

Using the game analytics and dashboard tools in deltaDNA, it’s easy to make sure these charts are accessible. While the most basic configuration of these charts is shown above, the tools are fully flexible and can be used to filter and hone each of the charts to exact specifications. For example you could:

– Filter all the charts to a particular region or platform
– Use session number or user level to track progress rather than days since install
– Add new steps to our FTUE at any time, or edit existing ones
– Add additional charts or reconfigure the location/size of the existing ones

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