Nick Yee and Nic Ducheneaut both have academic backgrounds that combine social science with computer science. They received their PhDs from Stanford University and U.C. Berkeley, respectively, and began working together in 2005 at the Palo Alto Research Center (Xerox PARC). Their shared interest in developing innovative methods to study online games—whether it is creating empirical frameworks of gamer motivations or mapping social networks in World of Warcraft—resulted in more than 40 peer-reviewed papers.
Seeking to apply these insights and methods directly within the game industry, they joined Ubisoft in 2012 where they founded the Gamer Behavior Research group. Their fluency in different methodological approaches allowed them to combine and derive actionable insights from diverse data sources, which accelerated collaboration between design, marketing, and analytics teams. In order to meet a broader industry demand for their unique skillset, they formed Quantic Foundry in 2015.