Industry News Weekly – Issue #130

Overview of the current mobile RPG market


GameRefinery writes on the overview of the mobile RPG market, and compares how it performs in the eastern and western markets. Read more here…

Social Design Practices for Human-Scale Online Games


Be warned – this read is lengthy, and bit more on the scientific side of game design. This Lost Garden article brings the result of investigating MMOs, and connecting knowledge from MMO games and social psychology. Read here…

Creative Ways To Build Your Community Before Launching Your Game


This article shares three stories on ‘how can I get people talking about my game before I’ve even launched it?’.

  • Use a meta-game in Discord to build hype and excitement for your upcoming title – RageSquid
  • Live stream your development to gain traction and also get instant feedback from other developers – Wase Qazi
  • Be creative with your email campaign, and get people asking to be added to your mailing list – Boyfriend Dungeon

Read more here…

The Rising Need for Game Economy Designers in Freemium Mobile Games


Pietro Guardascione, Senior Director – Envelope Design, King writes about how in the next few years we’ll see a new job in the game design field – “analytical game designers” who work with simulations and support lead designers in iterating on the key game systems. His reasoning behind this is the unique problems of freemium mobile game mechanics – creating systems that engage players for years and allow for deep monetization. 

“Game economy designers at King are “analytical game designers” who look at games as machines and partner with the lead designer on a game title to transform a vision and a desired player experience into mechanics and parameters. They build simulations of the game mechanics and find answers to questions like, “How long will players need to complete a game?” or “How deep can monetization be in this game?”  Having a game economy designer working in a game team early in the development process allows for the game team to iterate much faster on game systems, months before having these systems implemented in game. A game can then move in production with confidence that enough “content” will be available to allow for years of play and for enough monetization depth.”  Read the article for more details and examples of this approach in RPG and Casual genre. 

2019 Predictions: Puzzle Category


Deconstructor of Fun brings us predictions for the puzzle category in 2019. Big picture: “nailing down retention and monetization are not enough to create a successful product: you need to nail down your marketability as well. Funnel conversion is the new LTV.” For more details and in-depth analysis, read the whole article.

2019 Predictions: Hyper-Casual


Second article in their predictions series is dealing with what’s going to happen in the Arcade games. Read more on Deconstructor of Fun.

Blacklist in Ad Monetization


Interesting view on blacklisting your competitors in ad monetization. Read.

News around the globe


  • PocketGamer brings the list of top 25 best RPGs for iOS. The list includes Marvel Strike Force, Lineage2 Revolution, M&M Elemental Guardians but also some less known titles. 
  • NBA and Take-Two extend their agreement – potential value $1.1B. Value more than doubled compared to the one from 2011. The deal allows Take-Two to publish titles across all platforms, including mobile. Details here.
  • Westworld (Warner Bros) has been taken down from the app stores after Bethesda accused the game to being a “blatant rip-off of Fallout Shelter”. The servers will be shut down on 16th April and IAP are already unavailable.  In a lawsuit, the publisher claimed that Behaviour (developer who worked both for Warner Bros and Bethesda) had leveraged “Bethesda’s computer code, game designs, and other intellectual property as the foundation for the Westworld game”. This news comes after joint statement announcing that “the parties have amicably resolved the lawsuit”. During its lifetime, Westworld has been downloaded 2.2M times generating $1.2M in revenues.
  • World Health Organization and Entertainment Software Association met to discuss WHO’s last year decision to list gaming disorder on the official list of addictive disorders. The purpose of the meeting was to exchange information, and share views on upcoming WHO activities related the industry and how gaming will play a role in those. Details.
  • Amazon is joining Google and Microsoft efforts of building a gaming streaming service. According to undisclosed sources, the platform will be ready until 2020 (at the earliest). More.
  • So far, Rapper 2 Milly, actor Alfonso Ribeiro, and Instagram personality Backpack Kid have all sued or joined existing suits against Epic Games for including their dance moves in Fortnite. Now, another lawsuit has surfaced from the mother of “Orange Shirt Kid” and his dance routine, referred to in Fortnite as “Orange Justice.” In this case, a dance called “The Random” was submitted directly to Fortnite by a child known online only as “Orange Shirt Kid” for the game’s Boogie Down contest, but the dance didn’t win. However, it did go viral and Epic used it without the approval. Details here.
  • PocketGamer reports that Outplay could axe up to 30 staff. Outplay CEO Douglas Hare said he wanted to narrow the company’s focus on games “have the most opportunity for success in 2019 and beyond”. More here.
  • Blizzard co-founder Mike Morhaime is set to leave Activision Blizzard in April. More info.

Notable new releases


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