Challenge background

Towards the end of the Data School training, there is a unique challenge that awaits where everyone will produce a dashboard with a different dataset every day for a week. This is the first day of the challenge, our task for the day is to connect to IGDB API and tell a story with your dashboard.


The data source

IGDB API was designated for this project, with an option to use Twitch as a supplementary data source. IGDB API documentation can be viewed here.


My approach to the challenge

Step 1: Read the document thoroughly

This step is very important, as you need to know the specific query and the appropriate parameter to get the data you need. For example, what do you need to do to get through the authentication, is there a call limit, and how much data are you allowed to request at a time?

This time the API document is very well written and fairly helpful. Especially they provide step-by-step instructions and real examples.


Step 2: Trying out different queries and parameters in Postman

Postman is a great tool to test the query. You can try inputting different endpoints, parameters to see what you will actually get from the API before you download the data in Alteryx. This will save you quite a lot of time.


Step 3: Get as much data as you can

This is self-explanatory as we would like as much data as possible. But also think about the cost of time, we cannot get everything due to a limited timeframe.


Step 4: Look at the data structure and understand the data

Play around with the data in Alteryx, and see what fields are available within each endpoint. Have a think about how you can utilize this endpoint to create the dashboard and how it can relate to the other endpoint to enrich the story.


Step 5: Decide which data to keep for the dashboard

Very similar to step 4. Now you should really be thinking about what your MVP will look like, make your decision based on the core tables you need and a few optional tables as a backup. Then clean/transform them into the desired format for dashboard building.


Step 6: Dashboard building

Start to get creative, think about what story you can find within the data.


The dashboard

After major ETL (Extract, Transform, Load) hassle, it is finally time to build a dashboard in Tableau.

I am seeking to address the following questions via my dashboard:

  1. Do gaming preferences vary across different platforms in terms of genres?
  2. Which game mode is the most common across different platforms?
  3. How many regions does a game typically release to? Which region gets the most ‘first release’? (failed to answer)
  4. Which month has the most game releases?


I spend way too much time in Alteryx to request/clean data. Which by COB I was still trying to figure out the data model.

In essence, dashboard week is a mini version of a client project, you start exploring the data in the morning, by mid-day you should have a wireframe for the dashboard similar to a mid-week check-in meeting in a client project week. And then spend the entire afternoon to create the dashboard.

John Lyu
Author: John Lyu

John is deeply passionate about data and firmly believes in its transformative power, especially in areas like Machine Learning, Data-Centric AI (DCAI), and Storytelling with data. He is extremely excited about opportunities to test his knowledge and expand his industry insights, such as Kaggle competitions and visualization contests. John thrives on collaboration, enjoying the experience of working alongside talented colleagues and learning from their expertise. In his free time, John enjoys playing basketball, hitting the gym, and hanging out with friends. He is also a trading card collector. He enjoys making new friends, so be sure to come and say hi.