In the beginning it wasn’t too difficult to make a profitable business making games on app stores. In recent years, however, app stores have become flooded with games. The market now demands that game designers fine tune their design skills to a high level. At Casual Connect Asia 2017, Color Switch LLC Game Designer David Reichelt discussed what it takes to make it in this industry as a game designer and what every designer should focus on in order to make games that stand out in the market. “Work on being an inspired person because what you produce will be inspired and people cannot copy or clone your inspiration.”
If you are a developer of mobile games, monetization is your constant concern; it is critical to your success. And it will be harder for you to monetize in some markets than in others. Emerging markets may be a particular struggle for you. So, what do you need to do to be successful in these markets?
Stanislav Sychenkov, Head of Publisher Development at myTarget, is someone who knows these problems and can give you valuable information. Mail.ru launched myTarget, a mobile monetization platform. It is now a main traffic source for advertisers in Russia. Before coming to Mail.ru, Stanislav was responsible for ad monetization in Zeptolab, the creators of highly successful games such as Cut the Rope and King of Thieves.
At Casual Connect Asia Stanislav used the example of Russia to provide insights into successful monetization in the more challenging markets. From their experience they developed several principles that they and their partners all over the world are using. By doing these things differently they are enabled to increase their profitability. If you would like to learn more about what you can do to use these same principles be sure to watch the video of Stanislav’s full session.
As a developer, you constantly notice the changing dynamics of the app stores. How will the changes affect business models? How will they affect you?
At Casual Connect Asia Tarush Agarwal, Business Director at Toca Boca, gave insights into how you can successfully navigate this constantly evolving ecosystem. Tarush is responsible for managing and growing Toca Boca’s digital presence and revenue with global strategic partnerships. Before joining Toca Boca Tarush worked for the Walt Disney Company in LA and New York.
Using Toca Boca’s method for creating high quality apps for children as an example, Tarush demonstrated how leveraging partners and diversified business models can reach new customers globally. He described the best practices for developers to find creative solutions that will add customer value. To learn more about this important topic, be sure to watch the video of Tarush’s session at Casual Connect.
What is it about clan systems that is so intriguing? They are becoming more and more popular and have now been introduced in nontraditional genres. The racing genre has becoming especially engaging as this opportunity for social interaction has become a part of the experience. Leonard Frankel, as Co-Founder and CEO of ClanPlay, a messaging app that sychronizes with the chat inside games, is in a unique position to understand why and how clan systems really matter.
Prior to Clanplay Leonard was Vice President of Business Development at Plarium, a leading mobile strategy game developer. At Casual Connect Asia, Leonard used the clan systems in CSR 2 and Real Racing to demonstrate the key aspects of setting up a strong clan system in any game. Then he used these principles to set up an imaginary system for the arcade racing game Asphalt. To learn more about this exciting way to incorporate social interaction into a game, be sure to watch the video of Leonard’s session at Casual Connect.
John B. Lin is the Managing Director of PlayStudios Asia. His previous work was with real world casinos, like the Las Vegas Sands. Now he’s looking to integrate social gaming with real-world casino efforts. At Casual Connect Asia 2017, John discussed the APAC social games market.
How vulnerable is the game industry in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)? Its competitors in Japan and the US have an IP business foundation. Without the same foundation, Atsuo Nakayama maintains that ASEAN will lose ground in comparison.
Atsuo is President and COO of Bushiroad Singapore where they manage its TCG, Mobile game and Anime business that derives from the IPs they own, including Vanguard, Baddy Fight and BanG Dream. They also specialize in the IP business from their previous work as Studio Head and General Manager of Bandai Namco Studios in Vancouver and Singapore.
Atsuo described the process of creating the fan base for the game IP they were making, “It took a three year effort to crystallize IP with a certified core fan base.” Clearly this is not a quick and easy thing to do. But they insist that by following Bushiroad’s procedure in creating IP, developers will realize this is just what Singapore and the ASEAN countries should be targeting. Watch this video of Atsuo’s presentation at Casual Connect Asia to learn more about the importance of IP business.
What’s coming next in the game industry? It’s a vital question for all game developers and publishers; if you are not constantly aware of coming possibilities, you may not be able to profit from them or even stay relevant.
At Casual Connect Asia, Nelson Rodriguez, shared some exciting developments that will completely change how games are made, played and distributed. Nelson, head of Akamai Technologies media and games industry marketing strategy, has the experience and perspective to offer in how to be ready for the future. They have helped in the launch of dozens of games across every platform, from blockbusters such as Halo 3, Tekken 5 and Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood to the indie games Tweet Defense and A Kingdom for Keflings.
Nelson described an emerging revolutionary platform that very few developers have focused on. After talking with leading technologists and companies worldwide, they predict that within five years everyone will be rushing to catch up. Nelson pointed out, “GM attended DICE and created a research division to create gamification and infotainment for cars,” as an example of what to expect with car companies investing in game technology. This unique platform is just over the horizon, so be ready! To learn more about it and the possible effects, be sure to watch this video of Nelson’s full presentation at Casual Connect.
Even if you create an amazing game you'll still need to put effort in discoverability. - Diana…Click To Tweet
Diana Platonova is the Business Development Manager at MyTona, an international free-to-play games developer and publisher, where her main goals are increasing MyTona’s business growth and widening its branding. In her Casual Connect Asia talk Diana shared tips and tricks of bringing a Hidden Object game to Top 20 Grossing, with the example of MyTona’s title Seekers Notes: Hidden Mystery that climbed the chart up to Top 20 Grossing for US iPad. One of here tips was: “We target offers by special filters, so that each player gets what’s most suitable for them.”
Solitary players are spending most if we put them into the most socially active room! - Wibe WagemansClick To Tweet
As the fastest growing social casino company, Huuuge Games is innovating through relentless focus on a real-time social multiplayer platform. At Casual Connect Asia, Wibe Wagemans spoke about how Huuuge Games has already achieved category leading monetization (ARPDAU) and has seen success with TV and digital ad campaigns and how Huuuge Games is going after new market segments and demographics. He reflected, “The funny thing is there are a lot of players in social casino who play slots solely alone. What we’ve discovered is if we put them in the same room room with other players, you can drive the ARPDAU for even 50-year-old players.” Keeping on top of updates is crucial to user retention. He explained, “I cannot emphasize enough how important speed is for a startup. We have cycles where we do updates every two weeks – which allows us to innovate way faster than anyone else in the industry.”
After completing game development, marketing is the most difficult task faced by new game companies. MyTona achieved great success from their first self-published title and at Casual Connect Asia 2017 they shared their post-launch advertising experience and some “hacking” tips to acquire high quality users while maneuvering through the challenges of post-launch marketing.