Play it again, you’ll probably get a different experience, says Dr. Michael Stearns, a professor of psychology at Cornell University who has studied how people learn and behave.
“I think the first thing that comes to mind is that the Puffle was probably the most memorable game in video game history,” he says.
In fact, the Puffs’ distinctive design helped them be recognized as a unique and recognizable object, and it made them a target for the game’s developers.
They even had their own official mascot, the puff.
“We know that when people play a game, they’re trying to solve a problem,” Stears says.
“It’s a kind of a problem-solving game.”
What’s interesting about the Pumps is that it’s possible to learn more about them by watching the game itself.
Researchers have found that when players are introduced to a new object, they tend to be more likely to play with it and solve the problem.
For example, when a puffed-up bird appears in the middle of a field, they’ll more likely move toward it and play with the bird.
The same pattern applies to a person in a crowd who is in the way of a play.
But when that person disappears, the participants don’t play with that object again.
That suggests that they are more likely than others to try to solve it again.
“This shows us that this kind of play has a lot to do with learning,” Stears says.
And when researchers looked at more than 10,000 players in different countries, they found that the more times the game was played, the more likely the players were to try and solve a new puzzle.
“What this shows us is that when we play games, we have a natural incentive to solve puzzles,” Stath said.
“The more games we play, the better we’re at solving these kinds of problems.”