Factors that Contribute to the Success of Mobile Gaming

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.

  1. Evolving Technology

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.

  1. Early Mobility

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.

  1. 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.

  1. 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.

3 common mistakes a mobile game developer should avoid

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.

5 useful tips for developing mobile games

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.

Top 3 mobile game development tools available today

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.

Unreal Engine

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.

Corona SDK

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.

Unity

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.