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January 17, 2018
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Ramin Shokrizade's Blog   Expert Blogs


I have been passionate about studying, designing, and writing about game economies since 2000. I have a prior background in team sports, exercise physiology, neuroscience, drug addiction (both research and clinical work), and was a UCLA and Olympic trainer when my team set several world records in 1988. 

In my papers I tackle some of the more uncomfortable subjects in our industry. For this reason I was asked to advise the international regulatory body for media (the ICPEN) in Panama in 2013 during the first round of regulatory debate. This responsibility had a profound effect on my writing as I see this as a necessary, albeit perilous professionally, niche. 

Since 2014 I have been focusing my research on the development of game physiology methodology, and merging that with my previous work in game economics to create game neuroeconomics. The techniques I have developed are both powerful and (again) controversial as I seek to meet consumer needs directly instead of through trial and error.To allow me to continue writing on controversial subjects that are in the interest of the gaming industry, and to permit me to continue my private research, I tend to assist the industry as a confidential consultant. This allows me to assist some of the world's largest and most prestigious gaming companies while maintaining a firewall that protects both our interests. 

I am grateful that since 2012 the editorial staff at Gamasutra has continued to allow me to post my articles here, especially as I increasingly address issues that go beyond strict gaming applications.

For more information about me, please check my LinkedIn profile ( 

A complete list of my less recent (2010-2012) papers is here:

I also have various podcasts floating around with NPR and Josh Bycer's Game Wisdom that can be found with a Google search if you want to hear me go into more depth on various topics.



Expert Blogs

Understanding how games and other media affect consumers on a biological level can lead to major breakthroughs in commercial success and public health. Part 1 of a 2 part series.

Ramin Shokrizade recently suggested that the technology exists to make our F2P games more consumer friendly. Here he reveals some of the methods he has created and urges developers to consider adopting them as an alternative to existing methods.

Posted by Ramin Shokrizade on Mon, 04 Dec 2017 10:05:00 EST in
It's getting real over at EA with regards to consumer and regulator push back against their business models. Here Ramin Shokrizade uses Star Wars themed analogies to describe how this is a market shock, and how it will affect the entire industry.

Posted by Ramin Shokrizade on Mon, 06 Nov 2017 10:41:00 EST in Business/Marketing, Production, Serious
Recent Google and Carnegie Mellon University statistical studies have shown us what kinds of teams and employees are most successful, but statistics don't explain "why", which we need to build the teams they describe. For this we can look to neuroscience.

Posted by Ramin Shokrizade on Tue, 31 Oct 2017 09:49:00 EDT in
The ESRB recently declared that "elements of chance" in today's games are not gambling. No regulation is required and parents don't need to know about it. Here Ramin Shokrizade explains what an "element of chance" really means.

Posted by Ramin Shokrizade on Tue, 17 Oct 2017 10:07:00 EDT in Business/Marketing, Production, Serious
A recent Guardian article suggests that industry, at a strategic level, is warming to the idea of utilizing non-neurotypical workers. Intolerance is still the norm in the workplace, with improved understanding key to success and harmony.

Ramin Shokrizade's Comments

Comment In: [Blog - 01/15/2018 - 11:39]

This digitized audio chat can ...

This digitized audio chat can then be used for different analyses including abuse and fraud. r n r nThis implies AI is being used to listen in on otherwise private conversations and use that information for the benefit of the game provider. This has an enormous number of implications, almost ...

Comment In: [News - 01/17/2018 - 10:54]

Please please correct me if ...

Please please correct me if I 'm wrong, but China seemed like it had a reputation for being fairly lax about this sort of thing in the past. This has allowed this sort of undermining mod culture to flourish. Now it seems to be shifting. Is this a maturation of ...

Comment In: [News - 01/17/2018 - 09:33]

Even if there were some ...

Even if there were some issues with previous design or technical team members, I wonder if MS and Playground are considering tapping some of the original Lionhead creatives. These people certainly have lived and breathed Fable for a good part of their lives. Leamington Spa is a beautiful town with ...

Comment In: [News - 01/16/2018 - 02:24]

As Apple has stated recently ...

As Apple has stated recently in their earnings report, their revenues have hit a record high last year. Gaming activity, however, is down significantly as I predicted some months ago: r n r n the Data Implosion will trigger the Great Game Dev Correction.php r n r nDevelopers will tend ...

Comment In: [Blog - 01/12/2018 - 09:11]

As a game economist, the ...

As a game economist, the biggest problem I usually face with game economies is inventory overload issues. Here when I mean Game economy I mean an actual game economy where resources are traded between players, not an Excel spreadsheet game that has a budget but no player trade. r n ...

Comment In: [News - 01/15/2018 - 12:28]

I don 't want to ...

I don 't want to comment on the specifics of this situation because I suspect there is a LOT more going on to this story beyond just pornographic pictures of employees being distributed in the company that we don 't know about. r n r nWhat I would like to ...