China’s mobile gaming market has been experiencing explosive growth and and is projected to soon overtake the US market by as early as next year in 2015. Independent research firm Niko Partners estimates China’s mobile game market to grow 93% to $2.9B in 2014 with compound annual growth of 37.6% from 2013 to 2018. Source: Niko Partners Today, most US game developers … [Read more...] about China Mobile Game Market: What You Need to Know!
I was recently asked about the best approach to come up with a +1 mobile game design and wanted to cover this topic. In my view, a very specific approach and process to maximize your chances for success should be considered. What is that approach? I call it a "problem-centric" framework. What does that mean? It means that you are taking an existing design and trying to … [Read more...] about +1 Game Design: A Problem-centric Framework
Context: Mobile game design by flows refers to the concept of mapping out the entire set of screens a user can tap through in a mobile game: the user flows. While many of the larger mobile game studios such as Zynga or GREE routinely design UI/UX by flows, many mobile application designers are still designing individual screens by feature. In this blog post I … [Read more...] about Mobile UI and Game Design: Screens vs. Flows
A man can surely do what he wills to do, but cannot determine what he wills. - Arthur Schopenhauer John Hopson introduced the concept of the compulsion loop applied to video games as early as 2001. Since then, compulsion loop mechanics continue to get integrated into video games fairly broadly. The compulsion loop concept regained popularity in the 2010-2012 period … [Read more...] about The Compulsion Loop in Game Design Explained
Should your software product development team be agile? The answer I almost always hear (especially in Silicon Valley) seems to be "of course, yes", but the right answer should be: "it depends." These days there seems to be a bit of religion and marketing brainwash around development teams' requirement for "agility" and the Scrum process in particular, and yet for all of the … [Read more...] about How Complexity Domain Impacts Software Development Process
Bear with me on this post. There will be some financial jargon and a bit of math but the conclusions drawn I believe will be worth your read (at least I hope so!). Let's first start with some financial theory which will form the basis of the arguments I make. In finance, the "efficient markets hypothesis" supposes the following relationship between risk and reward for a … [Read more...] about Implications of “Alpha” and “Beta” in Mobile Gaming
Introduction Humans require a heartbeat to live. The heart pumps blood including essential nutrients throughout the body to sustain life in a regular cycle and rhythm. Similarly, mobile games in particular require a similar concept of a "heartbeat" in order to sustain an audience and user interest in a regular cycle and rhythm. This is especially true for mobile … [Read more...] about Why Mobile Games Need a Strong “Heartbeat”
Context: Surprisingly, a large number of people in the video games industry expressed ignorance on the concept of micro vs. macro gameplay. If you're not familiar, now's your chance to learn. It's an important concept in video games and a concept that raises some interesting questions in the context of a mobile device. Stop and think: Which kind of gameplay do you think … [Read more...] about Micro vs. Macro Gameplay
Are you ready to level up your mobile app monetization? Context: In October of 2011, an article about DeNA included a number of key mobile monetization insights: High Ass ARPU: Claimed $12 ARPU (average revenue per user) - this was a strong indicator that there was a meaningful way that DeNA was designing monetization in their games not found outside of Japan User … [Read more...] about 12 Critical Mobile Monetization Concepts (Part 1 of 3)
According to Facebook and the press, Facebook gaming is booming. Headlines from the media indicate: Wired: "Facebook gaming thrives" The Next Web: "last three months of game revenue are a record" c|net: "Facebook's games business stronger than ever" Wall Street Journal: "Facebook Racks Up Record Games Revenue" Facebook CFO David Ebersman: "Q1 represented our largest … [Read more...] about What’s really going on with Facebook gaming?
In January of 2008, a Cal Tech and Stanford Business School research study showed that the perception of a wine can influence the actual physical enjoyment of the wine. In this study, people who drank the same wine that was priced at $90 vs. $10 did not only believe that the $90 wine was better but in fact actually experienced greater pleasure drinking the wine as measured by … [Read more...] about Psychology & Perception: How Games are Like Wine