Quality in the games industry: an analysis of customer perceptions

Barry Ip (Clinical Medical School, University of Wales Swansea, Swansea, UK)
Gabriel Jacobs (European Business Management School (EBMS), University of Wales Swansea, Swansea, UK)

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management

ISSN: 0265-671X

Publication date: 1 June 2006



The purpose of this paper is to explore, via an examination of a large number of games released in the quadrennial 2000 to 2003 for the five dominant video‐games platforms, the extent to which current product quality matches expectations.


All games software released between 2000 and 2003 for the five dominant video‐games platforms (Playstation2, Xbox, Gamecube, Gameboy Advance, and PC) were recorded and analysed for their perceived level of quality. The games were sorted with respect to country of origin, platform, publisher, genre, and time of release with the aim of assessing possible relationships with quality.


The results are disquieting in that they suggest a threat to the long‐term prosperity of the games industry, when quality as perceived by experienced gamers and reviewers is taken into consideration.

Research limitations/implications

The main limitation of the study is that customer perceptions in the form of review scores may be biased as a means of gauging true software quality. Further research is required to develop more stringent means of assessment for the benefit of consumers and developers.

Practical implications

The findings represent a comprehensive reflection of the quality of software in today's games market.


This paper fills a sizeable gap in the area of quality analysis for interactive software, and provides an objective overview of the current state of the games market and is a useful source of information for researchers of quality assessment in the area of software and market analysis.



Ip, B. and Jacobs, G. (2006), "Quality in the games industry: an analysis of customer perceptions", International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, Vol. 23 No. 5, pp. 531-546. https://doi.org/10.1108/02656710610664596

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Copyright © 2006, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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