What a year it’s been for mobile games. When it began we were using our phones to become best friends with Kim Kardashian and by the end we were strapping them to our face to experience the wonders of virtual reality. To mark the end of 2014 we’re bringing together the ten best stories from the past six months (we did the first six months earlier in the year).
These articles are the most popular stories featured in our This Week in Mobile Games newsletter, providing insight on how topics including Kim Kardashian became the biggest name in mobile gaming, trends in monetization, design tips from the ‘best worst game of the year’, and plenty of info on app store optimisation and user acquisition.
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During his talk at this year’s F2P Summit Vili Lehdonvirta of the University of Oxford dared to criticize Supercell for their inability to include player-to-player economies in Hay Day. According to Lehdonvirta player-to-player economies can improve a game’s retention and make a developer’s life much easier. Find out what he said by visiting Pocket Gamer.
Who’d have thought that Kim Kardashian would become a mobile gaming celeb in 2014? It caught many by surprise, as did the claim that the Kim Kardashian: Hollywood game would make $200m before the end of the year! To find out why we become a virtual socialite and uncovered seven reasons for the game’s unexpected success. Head over to the Dubit blog to find out more.
Our readers couldn’t get enough of Kim in 2014. Our third most popular story was also about her breakout game, this time it was a story about a journalist from Jezebel spending $494 on in-app purchases, and her thoughts about the game. Find out what went on by visiting Jezebel.
Near the end of the year Pocket Gamer asked its monetization mavens to name the games which caught their eye the most in terms of how they integrate monetisation with user experience. It’s an interesting list that ranges from Kim Kardashian: Hollywood and Family Guy: The Quest for Stuff to Clash of Clans and Hearthstone. Check out the full list at Pocket Gamer.
With the App Store being the most popular place for app discovery it’s no surprise that articles on app store optimisation were popular this year. This article included advice on app store icon design direct from Apple, taken from a report by Apple UX Evangelist, Mike Stern. The article covers what makes a good icon and goes on to provide six important points to consider, such as colour, shape and photos. Check out the full guide at TNW.
Most free-to-play games sell some sort of premium currency, whether they’re gems, donuts, gold, or berries. In this popular post Wolfgang analyses the premium currency tricks and trends found in 32 popular games on the App Store. They include a lack of variety in pricing, publishers fibbing about the most popular purchases, and why buying the most expensive currency pack isn’t always the best option. Read all of Wolfgang’s findings on the All Work All Play blog.
It’s been called ‘the best worst game in the world’ and ‘the anti-flappy bird’. Whatever you call it, Desert Golf, with 80s-style graphics and procedurally generated courses is an additively simple game that’s winning over casual and hardcore gamers. In an interview with game’s developer the Guardian looked at the secret to its success and the novel design decisions that separate it from the crowd.
How to Know how Well Your Game Will Perform in the First 48 Hours
It’s widely understood that it takes a month’s worth of metrics before you can tell how well your game is performing. But according to Jon Walsh of Fuse Powered there are some metrics that can be seen within the first 48 hours. In a post for Games Brief, Walsh explains his maths and provides a number of equations that could help you rate your game’s chances for success in the first two days.
We’ve got another article on app store optimisation, this time from Gamasutra. Written by Szilard Szasz-Toth it details how you can make your apps easy to find and the importance of difficulty scores. Read it at Gamasutra.
Pixelberry Studios début game, High School Story, stayed in the top 100 grossing chart for a year! So it’s no surprise that this feature written by their CEO Oliver Miao proved popular. In it Miao shares his top tips for launch marketing and user acquisition. Click here to read it.
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