Mobile games have tremendously come to full rise in the late 2000s and early 2010s. Just as everyone started to own a smart phone or tablet, mobile gaming has turned from a non-existent market to a $17.5 billion industry as of 2013.
From being difficult to access and complicated to navigate, mobile games have dramatically improved in terms of mechanics and graphics. It also gave birth to many genres as target audiences have doubled. Anyone with a mobile phone, regardless if its iOS or Android, has installed and played a mobile game at one point of their life. As the time progresses, it’s clear that mobile games are here to stay.
What could be the reasons why mobile gaming has been this successful? The factors below are contributors to the rise and popularity of mobile games.
Mobile devices such as PDAs and Blackberries were the first models designed that could actually handle mobile games. On the downside, they were marketed as business tools rather than for entertainment which is why there was limited potential for game developers. This perception was totally changed when iPhone was introduced by Apple in 2007. The iPhone was a massive success, as its entertainment systems were highlighted on top of its phone capability.
iPhone has changed the perception of phones. With its features, it has made mobile phones not just for businessmen or professionals but for everyone. With the rapid success of iPhone and development of competitors, the future for mobile games has become brighter. In a quick span of time, traditional gamers were outnumbered by new potent players. According to a 2013 US market statistics, only about 70 million own PS3s while 200 million have iOS and Android devices. Learn how iPhone mania has ruled the world by reading here.
Because of its portability and accessibility, a lot of players preferred to play their games while they are on the road instead of being tied into their living room TV set.
Second, producers have saved huge amount of money with the new distribution mechanisms of smart phones. Developers realized its full potential when App Store was opened by Apple in 2008. Game distribution has now transitioned into simple and inexpensive way.
Not only mobile games are easier to publish, it’s also easier to obtain wider audiences. It costs more money to copy and transport physically distributed games while there is a tough restriction from established publishers for the digitally-distributed console or PC games. The distribution potential as well as low cost made the production and distribution of mobile games so much easier.
Do you remember the game Snakes?
This popular game in the ’90s was the first mobile game cited by the Entertainment Software Association (ESA), the governing body of video game industry. For those who weren’t born yet when almost everyone was crazy over Snakes, this game only existed on Texas Instruments graphing calculators. Player would need to use the arrow keys to navigate a small snake around the screen. You would also need to avoid walls, obstacles and running back into the snake itself if you don’t want the game to be over. The snake has to eat numbers that randomly appeared across the screen and grew as it eats.
Though the popularity of snake was unquestionable, graphing calculators were very expensive which is why portable game had limited potential. Games stayed limited to specific portable systems such as PlayStation Portable or Nintendo Gameboy.
It was only until 200s that game development purposes have been leveraged for both entertainment and technology.
Costs and Funding
Another factor that contributed to the rapid success of mobile games is the cost of production. Aside from the fact that mobile games have easier contribution compared to traditional games, they also cost less to develop.
Mobile games don’t need detailed cinematic graphics. Developers draw in their audience by creating great characteristics and innovative mechanics. These appealing traits are easier to code than detailed graphics hence small teams are only required to develop the game. It means lower overhead and cost of the company.
Aside from that, less overall codes are required in mobile games which speed up the production time. There’s a bright future for small developers as investment only costs a few hundred dollars compared to about $50 million in traditional games.
Another contributor to the rapid growth of mobile industry is the development of funding patterns. Crowdfunding sources such as Indiegogo and Kickstarter have helped insure that development of mobile games is continuous. The interested parties can donate small amounts of money to support a certain project. If you have a creative and innovative idea but don’t have enough budgets, you can simply turn to crowdsourcing for help.
Traditional Games Stagnation
Mobile industry remained strong and stable thanks to available funding and low developmental costs. While traditional games are having difficulty adapting on these factors, it proves to be an advantage for mobile games.
Mobile games have made a huge competitive leap against console interface. Console makers are stuck with improving decades-old mechanics and graphics while there’s a consistent upgrade of mobile devices every year. The innovation of new products and improvement of new phone features make the life of mobile games developer easier.
In addition, traditional games cost more than mobile games – from its production to its distribution. This limits the developers when it comes to taking a risk. Many large studios rely on a few popular blockbuster titles as their primary source of income. Almost all of these blockbusters are established franchises or sequels. If you’re someone who is looking for new game experiences, traditional games may meet this need. Whereas in mobile games, upgrades and innovations are not uncommon.
Mobile gaming is here to stay. It appeals to many potential gamers because it is innovative, low cost and accessible. As long as there is a demand from consumers, developers will continue to create new and exciting features. In conclusion, we can say that the future of mobile gaming has never looked this brighter.
With so many competitors in the mobile game market, the game developers are always trying to attract the users with great features, stunning animation, and attractive storyline. Yet, many game developers cannot be successful in the market. There are some common mistakes that many game developers make and these prevent them from being successful.
Not considering the target group
You should have a target group for your game. That way, it will be easier for you to add the different features to your game. You can make the difficulty levels of the game according to your target group. If the game you develop is not appropriate for the users, then they will lose interest in the game. So, it’s very important to choose your target group first.
Not having a proper business goal
You should have a solid business plan. You should decide what kind of strategy you will adopt. You can make your game a premium one and put a high price tag on it, or you can release it as ‘free to play’. You should have a good monetization plan. If you are releasing the game as ‘free’ then you should decide whether you are going to make money from advertisements, in-app purchases or other means.
Not testing the game properly
Many game developers don’t become successful, because after release they get many flaws in the game. Bugs and other problems can make you lose your customers. You should vigorously test your game before releasing.
Mobile game developers must try to avoid these mistakes to increase their chances of being successful in the market. No matter how brilliant your game looks, if you make any of these mistakes, you may not get the result you had expected after the release of the game.
The mobile game development market is growing fast. Many companies have developed some awesome games. If you are a mobile game developer and want to be successful in this field, then here are some tips for you.
Create a story
Having a story behind your game is always compelling. So, instead of having meaningless objects, try to create a good story to attract the gamers. Your story should instigate curiosity that will make the user come back to your game.
Choose your platform
The first step of mobile game development is to come up with a unique game idea. Once you have done that you need to identify the appropriate platform. You can either limit yourself to the Android and iOS platform or even go beyond and include Blackberry, Symbian, etc. There are lots of game development tools available that can help you to develop games on these platforms.
UI/UX is very important
You should create excellent UI/UX. This makes the game engaging. The more your game is engaging, the more users you will have. Don’t introduce too many controls to the user; it will make the game complicated. You should include tutorials to give a better user experience. The ideal way is to create graphics for the largest screen size. This way you will get the best resolution.
Continuity of the game
You should bring in new updates for the game on a continuous basis. By adding new features, characters, and contents, you will motivate the customers to play your game again and again. You can add new levels of the game in your later versions to encourage gamers to play more.
Marketing is crucial
Having great idea and design are not enough for a game to be successful in the market. You should come up with a brilliant marketing plan for your mobile game. You can write a blog where you can discuss the various features of the game. You can also include a demo of the game on your blog. You can include in-app ads to increase the number of downloads. You can use social media to promote your game.
Many mobile game developers don’t become successful for making the game too complicated or not using the budget properly. You should have a proper plan and budget for your game. The tips just discussed can help you to become a successful game developer.
The gaming industry is growing and it is now more popular than the Hollywood movies. The technology is improving and now we have virtual reality and augmented reality, making the gaming experience even better. Mobile technologies have evolved and people are now more comfortable playing games on mobile phones rather than PCs or other devices. The developers now use various development tools to create games. Here are the most popular tools available today.
This game development tool has various options for mobile, console and PC game development. The graphical capabilities are simply stunning with new particles system and advanced dynamic lighting. It is very useful for the 3D game developers.
It is a cross-platform development tool for 2D games. The scripting language it uses is called ‘Lua’, and it is very easy to learn. It has more than 500 APIs that have various functions. However, the augmented and virtual reality functions are limited in this tool.
This tool offers various features for developing 2D and 3D games. For developing, cross-platform mobile games, this is the best option. Porting games to your mobile devices are very convenient using this tool. It supports various 3D applications like Maya, 3Ds Max, Blender, etc.
These development tools make the process of mobile game development very quick and easy. You don’t need to spend too much time on learning about them. Before you choose a development tool to develop your game, you should read their reviews.
If you wanted to play tennis without going out, feeling the scorching sun, dressing up in sports attire, and holding the tennis racket and ball, then this game is the answer to your wants. Tennis Star Cup is an online game developed. The game is created using the Unity 3D engine. It is a 3D tennis game created to allow players to play tennis without going outside. Play tennis using simple controls. What is important in controlling the game is that you know how to handle the mouse well. Since the game is controlled using the mouse, you need to have a good grip and timing. Good grip and timing are used in the real tennis game, so Tennis Star Cup is as good to play as the real tennis game. It ensured that even if the game is played on the screen, it would still make the player feel like playing it in real life. The details of the movements of the players, the audience, and the chair umpire are all elaborate and consistent. The game uses the top-down style so that the players could get a good view of the game.
How to Play the Game
There are three modes offered: Warm-Up, Tournament, and Challenges. If it is your first time playing the game, then you should hit the Warm-Up mode first to familiarize the controls and the game in general. You could also use the Challenges mode for the same purpose. If you feel that you are ready to take on the Tournament mode, then you are good to go. You will know where the ball will go because the spot where it is about to fall will become lighter than the rest of the ground. Your score will be displayed on the monitor located at the upper left of the screen. On the other hand, the score of the opponent will be displayed on the monitor located at the upper right of the screen. You could only select one character per match, so choose well.
Characters in the Game
Before the start of a match, you get to choose among the four characters available to use in the game. The characters are Andy, James, Gabriela, and Steffi.
Animal Planet: Orangutan Island Adventure is a game which promotes the awareness of how animals live in the wild. You could create an account by signing in to save your progress and settings. If you have an account in the game, then your name could be displayed in the Leaderboards if you get one of the best scores. However, if you do not want this, then you could opt not to create an account and just play the game.
The life of an animal is different in a zoo, in a rehabilitation center, and in the wild. Life is much harder in the wild compared to other places to stay because survival is extremely important there. If an animal is in a zoo or in a rehabilitation center, then it is fed and protected by humans. However, if an animal is in the wild, then it is exposed to predators and needs to fend for itself. You will be given three chances to finish the task of the level. The yellow bar at the lower left of the screen reflects the energy of the orangutan.
The game is centered on an orangutan that learns how to survive in the wild. It will learn foraging and other survival skills with your help. The objective of the game is to collect the needed fruit points before the night falls. Aside from the random predators hidden in the area, there will also be other challenges for the orangutan such as spines and the need to transfer from tree to tree or branch to branch using the dangling vines. The orangutan must be able to return safely to its nest before the night falls because there will be more dangerous predators that lurk and are more active at night.
Basic Instructions in the Game
You will use the left and right arrows on your keyboard to make the move the orangutan horizontally in the game. The up and down arrow keys are used to make the orangutan move vertically. Hold the down arrow key to drop the orangutan straight down. Be careful when using this key because you might fall straight to predators below. Use the spacebar to jump and to transfer from vine to vine or branch to branch.
Fluid is a game developed for MTV. The game has two modes to offer. The modes are Normal Mode and Scenario Mode. You will be given five lives at the start of the game. You should be able to accomplish your task within a minute and a half. There is a limit on how many circles you are allowed to make.
How to Play the Game
You could navigate through the game with the use of your mouse. The objective of the game is to fill in the shape with circles within the time limit. There will be a different shape to fill in every level. The percentage at the bottom part of the screen shows how much of the space is filled in by the circles. The challenge in the game is to avoid the thorn-like obstacles that move randomly inside the shape. Aside from moving randomly, the thorns also move fast which means that you should make your circles as fast as you can while avoiding them. Once you have finished inflating a circle, it cannot be burst anymore. This means that you could use the circles to trap the thorns to make the game easy for you. This game requires strategy and fast hands. Even if you know how to play the game but cannot control the mouse well, then you will still have a difficulty in playing the game. You also need to know when to stop inflating the circles before it bursts. The difficulty of the game increases as you progress through it. To get a big score you must not use all of the circles, not use up all your hearts, and finish the game as quick as you can.
You could also see the scores of others through the Leaderboards. It shows the names of the players with the best scores in the game. Aim to be included in the list. You could do this by frequently practicing until you can perfectly get the highest score possible. The game only requires you to play using the mouse. It is easy to understand and could make you sit in front of the screen for a long time. You could watch how to play the game by watching its gameplay that is available on Youtube by clicking this link. To know more Playdom, please click here.
If you have used Facebook, Google+ and MySpace you will surely have come across the games of Playdom.
It was founded on December 6, 2008 and was a part of The Walt Disney Company. Some of their popular games were:
Disney City Girl (now renamed “City Girl Life”)
Disney Words of Wonder (now renamed “Words of Wonder”)
Gardens of Time
As well as:
Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon (GotG)
Armies of Magic
Big City Life
Blackwood & Bell Mysteries
Botkin’s Hidden Cove
City of Wonder
Disney Animal Kingdom Explorers, Ghosts of Mistwood, Gnome Town, Hidden Worlds
ESPNU College Town, Return Man, Sports Bar and Grill
The Incredible Machine
(Lil) Farm Life, (Lil) Green Patch
Marvel: Avengers Alliance, 2, Alliance Tactics
Mobsters – Facebook, MySpace, Overdrive, 2: Vendetta, Criminal Empire
Pirates of the Caribbean: Isles of War
Sorority Life – Facebook and MySpace
Threads of Mystery
Tiki Farm, and Resort
There are a lot of things to consider if you are a mobile game developer. As you can see from the Playdom example, a lot of games can be produced. For more interesting news click here.
Bola is a sports game developed and published by Playdom and is available to play on Facebook as its platform. It was released on the eighteenth of January last 2010. It could be played using the third-person perspective. This means that it allows the player to look at everything in the field, the goal, the players, and the opponents. This view gives the advantage of knowing what is happening on all sides. The aim of Playdom was to make Bola become one of the top sports application on the Facebook platform.
How to Play the Game
The game will allow the player to control a team. The player could also play the game with friends or other Facebook users. The player could only play with random opponents if they are on the same level. The competition will be indirect because the player will have the match against the AI. The opponent could also have the opportunity to replay the match. The match will have a winner only if both players have played it and the best play counts. The player could also earn money through sponsorship. The money could be used to improve the stadium or to purchase other facilities that could unlock the other features of the game such as training players. As mentioned earlier, the perspective used in the game allows a wide view (top-down) and offers an arcade-style gameplay. The player cannot play the game for a long time because there is a limitation to the number of matches that could be played in a row. If the player wants to play the game but has already reached the limit of the number of games allowed to play in succession, then there is no other way but to patiently wait for the next set of matches.
According to the game developers, the game will also be appealing to the international audience because of its features and design. The game is simple, addicting, and user-friendly. Its features and settings are easy to understand and adapt to.
The list below contains few of the games that I personally enjoy.
Animal Planet – Orangutan Island
The game is all about the life of an orangutan in the wild. The game will test your foraging and survival skills that will determine the orangutan’s life in its habitat. Instructions are provided in the game to guide the player. The game begins with a goal for a certain level. For example, the orangutan must be able to collect at least 3000 fruit points before returning to its nest. The orangutan must be able to return to its home not later than three minutes.
The game is an online soccer game available on Facebook. The objective of the game is to score more points than the opponent before the time runs out. The player could select which team will be used for the game. The player could receive money through sponsorship which will then be used for improving the stadium and other facilities.
The Cho Show Game
The game is centered on Margaret Cho and Glam her squad entering a maze to collect coins and puppies. The player could navigate through the maze with the use of arrows which the characters will follow. There will be obstacles along the maze, likes holes which should be avoided by Margaret and her squad. To get a high score for each level, you need to plan out your moves so that Margaret and her friends could get out of the maze early while collecting the coins and saving the puppies.
Flash 3D Multiplayer Shooter
In this game, there could be more than one player on a server. This means that you could play against other players too. The objective of the game is simple, to be the last player standing. This game requires strategic thinking and wise navigation of the controls. You only need the mouse to play the game.
This game is a combination of football and volleyball. The player will form a team with two characters to start the game. The opponent will be set up randomly. The team with the most points wins the match.
This game is created with the Daiquiri Game Maker. It is a 3D game about agents chasing a villain. The agents will get to use high-tech vehicles. There will be a total of five levels to finish.
Lego Exo Force
You could only choose one of the four robots to play the game. The robots are Hayato, Takeshi, Hikaru, and Ryo. You could modify their weapons and your mini-bot. The game will only end if you defeat the biggest robot in the level. You should be able to hit while dodging the attacks of your opponents. The more robots you defeat, the bigger your score gets
Lego Indiana Jones
You will go on adventures to different places with Indiana Jones by playing this game. The objective of the game is to collect coins and other treasures as you avoid the obstacles while finding the exit. There are several levels to complete and you could also read about Jones’ bibliography in the game. Some of the gamers who played the game said that this is one of the best games.
Lego Star Wars: The Quest for R2D2
There will be instructions for the game that will appear before the game starts. Use your lightsaber to destroy objects that contain gems, and to fight against the opponents. Collect the gems as many as you can while finding the exit to proceed to the next level.