The bearded englishman’s first game on the way!

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Quick updated to let everyone know I’m currently busy developing my first game, More news on that soon. Follow me on twitter to find out more and keep up to date on the release date etc. beard on!   

The battle between console, mobile and reality

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Today I want to talk about console, mobile and reality. So I suppose we need to ask ourselves who is winning. Games on mobiles today seem to be lacking a storyline or a natural game play flow. The gameplay or mind set is more of “I’m on a lunch break so I will play this”. There are some decent games on the app store with great story/gameplay/graphics for example infinity blade. But I believe mobile games have not yet reached there full potential to beat the console. The console is ever advancing, why? Well the console is purely for gameplay and graphic’s are advancing each year.

The mobile/tablet is not built for gaming it’s built to meet your daily needs, but of course the mobile/tablet is much cheaper to run than a console. We know that the console is now allowing the users to engage and interact, I believe this is certainly the future and we will see an ever advancing technology such as the oculus rift to improve our gameplay experience.

Human senses

As humans we are always wanting to experience new things, new senses and explore. The new oculus rift gives all of these, we are no longer satisfied with the norm of games, we want the new thing, something that will challenge our behaviour and reality! Below you will see a video of exactly this, this man know’s he is in a shopping mall, he knows he is on solid ground but with a little push his reality and his behaviour changed.

So who is winning? Well no one as of yet. There will always be 3 types of gamers, the ones that want their behaviour and reality challenged, the second are those who enjoy the gameplay the story, and the third will be the mobile/tablet players, the quick fix for boredom or lunch.

We all have different opinions on this matter so let everyone know what type of gamer you are?

 

Originality in mobile games

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I believe in todays games we lack Originality, your probably thinking what I mean? Many of the mobile games you see today being released are likely to be very similar to temple run and flappy bird etc. My concern is that games are no longer an original idea and they lack storyline/creativity within the game. We all remember that in 2013 a game took over the app store in fact it took over the world (not quite but you know what I mean) this game was called “flappy bird”. The developer was earning $50,000 a day with ads and I say good for him. But this is where the problem started to grow. This has led to countless copies being added to the app store’s (mainly apple). It seems that today developers are chasing after the wealth/fame of others.

Apps similar to flappy bird are over crowded with ads just for a chance to get the $50,000 or close to it. This is a real shame because this lacks originality. Originality is so important in a game, but what I’m getting at here is as developers let’s be more creative. As people are aware of flappy bird copies why do we need more on.

Your a developer with a great skill and your really going to try and prove that by making another copy? we must get creative!!!

Creativity in a Clone World

There is huge market out there and people are waiting for a app to come out with originality. We are living in a time where money seems to be the core focus of apps, we have to remember that robots are not playing our mobile games/apps its real people, we must let this be the core focus. When we think of the person who will use the app I believe we will see some incredible ideas/games. so I encourage those who have the skills to please take your time to sit and think of something out of your awesome brain.

Creative Juices

Every time I’m thinking of a app or mobile game I sit down and draw a very simple brain storm.

mindmap

What do they need? Are people looking for a mobile game or something completely different, it’s important you do your research. What are your friends playing and see what is popular on social media. I also look at reviews of apps that fall in the same category as mine, what do reviewers like or dislike.

Why?

The why is extremely important. Why are people looking for a mobile game/app like mine? Why are they going to play/use it?

Is the Idea Unique? 

Your idea has to be original and unique so once again research is needed, is your idea too similar to another mobile game/app. You also have to see whether the market is right for your idea.

Does the App Allow the Users to Engage? 

This is very important. What is going to make the users keep coming back, how will it make them engage. The game must be something that someone can use on the long term, even in 12 months time will they still be using it?

Think of the interface, colours, funny characters, objectives etc.

Will it have a Social and Community Aspect to it? 

I think the answer should always be yes! Never leave out the power of social media, it’s the modern way of “the word of mouth.” It’s a great way to target Mobile user’s and it shows that you care about the people using your game.

Age? 

This is simple what age are the users going to be. This will help you target the right audience.

Does the App have a Story to It?

Not like a book but a short story or comic strip style that can make the user engage and make them feel like they are part of the game.

How is My Game going to be different from the other Games? What makes your Mobile game different? Not so much the category or genre it falls into but the story and the gameplay, free to play? or paid?

And last but not least be CREATIVE. Just go for it! Sometimes the craziest and simplest of ideas can be the most popular. It can work both ways, just make it fun.

Conclusion

Brainstorming will help you get on the path of being creative, it will get the creative juices flowing. This is key for you to have a Mobile game or app that is %100 originally yours. It’s a process and a lot of hard work but you will stand out from the crowd.

The aim about this blog post was to help encourage you not to copy someone else’s fame. If you are looking for investment then be yourself, it’s in you and your idea.

People that go around copying games will not get very far, but if you have a %100 original idea you know your on the right path.

Go forth be creative and %100 Original!!

The Bearded Englishman.

 

Games are no longer games.

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Welcome to my first blog post! I hope you enjoy the read.

You’re probably thinking what my title “games are no longer games” means and you have every right to think that’s a weird title. But I believe there is a lot of truth behind my title, I’m not talking about board games or pc games, I’m talking about mobile games or known as apps. I have a growing concern within the app store that I am seeing and this increasing concern is IAP (in app purchases). We all know that IAP has received a lot of press, especially here in the UK about forced payment. Anyway I’m not going to talk about this on my first post as we know there is two sides to every coin. I want to talk more about the game mechanics behind strategy games and how I feel like I am being punished every time I play games such as Clash of Clans or the other so called “free to play” games, but before I move on I want to make it perfectly clear that im not against COC (which I use as a example in my post) or any other type games or the company’s/developer’s behind them. I play them and I enjoy them just as much as you and I’m only highlighting my concern and I believe we can be inspired by these developers…so moving on.


Am I being Punished?

To be honest I think yes, if not then it certainly feels like it. For example here I am building my city I have few diamonds or gems, some gold, wood etc the game is pretty damn exciting at first and I am ready to invade, conquer, destroy, steel gold and other resources! I can sit happy and know I’m victorious. That is what I call a” game” and the definition of a game from wikipedia is “game is a system in which players engage in an artificial conflict, defined by rules, that results in a quantifiable outcome.” what I don’t read here is please wait 12hr, 24hr or even 8 days for you building to be built unless you want to buy gems to complete. I have nothing against people who spend there money on buying gems or diamonds, major developers have to earn money somehow, but when a game clearly states “free to play” and then makes you wait gets me very frustrated. It ruins the element of fun and makes me as a player feel like I am being punished because I am not buying gems or diamonds. Dare I say there is a sense of greed? But my growing concern is every time I see a new strategy game on the market it’s going to have the same game mechanics, and developers will no longer know how to create a great game without the core focus being about IAP to process faster in the game. I will no longer allow myself to be caught in a game when I know what to expect, for example in Clash of Clans I believe my castle is level 7 it’s been that way for a number of months and will probably stay that way, why you ask? To upgrade I will need 2000000 gold and it will take some time to get that as you can imagine, but I find as I reach my goal, a higher level player will always come along and take what they please! They clearly will have to either spend day and night on the game or use real money to purchase gems for upgrades. Don’t get me wrong if they want to spend there money on it thats fine! This in my view is where the game mechanics need to change in these strategy style games, clash of clans, boom beach, hay day, farmville, game of war. They all may have different interfaces/stories but they have the same mechanics “pay to advance” or wait.


Solution

So I have talked enough about the IAP/Gems system, I now want to talk about the solution to all this, there is no point me talking about my concern without coming up with some sort of solution. I am not expecting supercell of any other major company to actually take notice, after all supercell alone in In app purchases make daily $2.4 million and 8.5 million daily players that is an incredible achievement. But for the user/player something needs to change especially if your not willing to spend money on in app purchases.

On to my solution for strategy style games.

1. Those who regularly purchase items through the IAP should only play against those who do the same.

2. Those who have never spend a penny through IAP should play against those who do the same.

SIMPLE!!!?

3. Their needs to be some sort of engage/battle button on the screen. This can allow players wether they are playing for free or not to engage in battle. We have already seen this being welcomed on COC for clans to go to war.

Conclusion

But what about the gems/diamond situation? Should players who play for free no longer get gems/diamonds? To be honest no in my opinion the developers would have to completely change the game mechanics this costs time and money. My solution to this would be less building times and allow me to use my gold to decrease building time or complete my building. I can get more gold in a week than I can gems. How about more builders for different tasks?

The latest COC update did allow the two builders to work on different assigned tasks but to be honest it didn’t really do much for me because I am still waiting!!! Lets see the gold, gems and workers work together in the game to decrease my building time.

Or

The developers should collect data on the players who paying and who are playing for free (I’m sure they already are?) to give a different type of experience from the two types of player’s. The players who use IAP will have more of a intense/aggressive gameplay, where as those who don’t pay will have a longer calmer gameplay. This allows those who don’t pay a more of a organic flow to the game.

To be honest I believe both solutions could work together in one way or another.

So games are no longer games? We all have opinions and until I see more of an element of fun rather than feeling punished I will think definitely.

I welcome any comments even if you agree or strongly disagree, there are two sides to every coin and everyone has an opinion. This is a topic which I’m sure I will highlight again, my next blog post will be on Organic gameplay and what does that mean?

If you feel this is worthy of sharing then please go ahead, and please follow me on twitter!

Cheers and beard on people!

The Bearded Englishman