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Royal Revolt Post Mortem

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This was a talk at Quo Vadis Conference, Berlin.

Publicada em: Tecnologia, Diversão e humor
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Royal Revolt Post Mortem

  1. 1. Post Mortem Royal Revolt How a publisher and a developer joined forces to develop a successful mobile game franchise All content in this presention © flaregames GmbH
  2. 2. POST MORTEM
  3. 3. It‘s all in the mix! I am a developer. I am a publisher.
  4. 4. THE PUBLISHER SPEAKS so we needed: more games, especially in 3D… … but from trustworthy devs flaregames in early 2012: a few games in development (2D only) expertise in marketing and monetization (idling) successful financing round in progress (money to spend)
  5. 5. THE DEVELOPER SPEAKS Our situation in early 2012: wanted to do a F2P mobile game had some ideas and dev expertise so we needed: a partner with mobile publishing expertise a partner with F2P expertise project financing
  6. 6. We liked keen because, they... are very good multiplatform devs are dedicated to quality have strong dev pipelines, own 3D technology are experienced and hands-on can-do guys they reside an hour’s drive from flaregames HQ
  7. 7. We liked flare because they... have inhouse development and understand game dev have solid monetization expertise are experienced hands-on guys were also looking for long-term cooperation are led by the owner
  8. 8. We liked flare because they... have inhouse development and understand game dev have solid monetization expertise are experienced hands-on guys were also looking for long-term cooperation are led by the owner
  9. 9. We wanted a mid-core game... … that was roughly in the field of Tower Defense … that was 3D and colourful … that followed the monetisation concept of Army of Darkness … was without multiplayer (our server tech was not ready) … had the potential to be rolled out on multiple platforms … was character-driven ?
  10. 10. We offered a cute take on TO... … cartoony for mass appeal and not too hardcore … colourful, yet reduced to not confuse the player when many units are shown … charming, yet edgy enough to become a brand … reduced optical complexity for small screen sizes … straight gameplay I am a developer.
  11. 11. We offered a cute take on TO...
  12. 12. We offered a cute take on TO...
  13. 13. How we work together I am a developer. I am a publisher.
  14. 14. How we work together Game Design. Art. Code. Audio. Consulting. Marketing. PR. Monetization. Platform Holder Relations.
  15. 15. Timeline of production Brainstorming End of 2011, early 2012 3 months of prototyping Start of production in March 2012 Soft launch in Canada in August 2012 Worldwide release: 27.9.2012 After launch: Android Version Windows Phone 8 & Metro Version Amazon version Mac version More content Google Birthday Level Bonus-missions: Equinox, Easter, Bamboo, Daily Challenges
  16. 16. Angry Prince Prince Harming Raiding Prince Rushing Prince Punching Prince Striking Prince Angry Prince Prince Harming Raiding Prince Rushing Prince Punching Prince Striking Prince Kingdoms Attack Kick 'em Out Lord Bogsmart Lord Crusher Sir Crusher Why „Royal Revolt“? War of the Kingdoms Royal Attack Royal Crown The Royal Crown War of Thrones Kingdoms Attack The Golden Crown The Golden Kingdom Prince Vs. Greedy Uncles Prince Vs. the Greedy Knights Take the Castles! Game of Knights Castle Hero Castle Quest Chaos Castles Crashalot Destructalot Battle Castles Bogsmart Castle Battle Castle Buttkick Castle Chaos Castle Crusade Castle Crush Gate Crasher Hero at the Gate
  17. 17. We almost forgot iconic enemies...
  18. 18. We almost chose the wrong icon...
  19. 19. Experiments in marketing
  20. 20. Experiments in Marketing
  21. 21. The game came out and...
  22. 22. The success: 4,5 * on average in the AppStores 80+ score on average in media reviews good game 12 M downloads good media recognition some awards good platform relations established a brand ROI-positive
  23. 23. The failure: no real story no softlaunch on Android / W8 App-size too big weak monetization couldn‘t buy profitable installs unpronouncable name social features too late
  24. 24. Lessons learned: Windows is a blue ocean, Amazon didn‘t work out:
  25. 25. Lessons learned: Platform holder relations are key Naming needs a process Social features should be in from the start Single Player Games are hard to monetize Better monetization needed to scale marketing Agile development worked out Session length should be shorter, yet meaningful Content slicing: Don‘t let player burn through too fast 1 currency is not enough
  26. 26. But more importantly, we learned about skills/roles To achieve real success in the mobile market you need to… …have someone who does monetization and events …have someone who speaks to the platforms …have someone who does performance marketing …have someone charged with brand-building …have someone charged with social features …have a dedicated task force for server technology …have someone charged with deployment and loca …have a support unit …have a tough dev team able to deliver quality And all these roles have to communicate daily and as frictionless as possible.
  27. 27. Lessons learned: Platform holder relations are key Naming needs a process Social features should be in from the start Solo games are hard to monetize App marketing is harder than expected Agile development worked out ? ? ?
  28. 28. Brief for the sequel multiplayer instead of solo citybuilder gameplay competition and leagues complex economy (3+ currencys) aimed at a more mature audience production value even better than Royal Revolt longer soft launch to nail things down use infrastructure built by flaregames
  29. 29. Timeline of production Start of production in Q1 2013 Soft launch in Canada in October 2013 Worldwide release: 26.2.2014 After launch: Android Version, Google Birthday Level First update within 3 weeks Upcoming: Windows Phone 8 & Metro Version Many more updates
  30. 30. Expand the gameplay
  31. 31. Expand the gameplay
  32. 32. Expand the gameplay
  33. 33. Prototyping in Unity
  34. 34. New server architecture
  35. 35. More than a great game F2P success requires combining a great game with great service… League of Awesomeness Publishing, Live Operations
  36. 36. … which requires a complex technical and business infrastructure More than a great game League of Awesomeness GameLayer 24/7 Dev Ops PublishingInfrastructure Shop Server Data Mining Support Tools Virality Tools Promo Server Platform Plugins BusinessOperations Promo & Events Marketing BizDev Community AdSales Data Analytics
  37. 37. In-depth analytics Example: sales of an item package by user lvl and payer status  Tweaked content to make it more attractive at lvl 26+ 0 50 100 150 200 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 Recurring Conversion
  38. 38. In-depth analytics Example: likelihood of progression to higher pricepoints  Individually segmented discounts to induce buying of higher price points 0.00% 10.00% 20.00% 30.00% 40.00% 50.00% 60.00% 70.00% 80.00% < same same next >next Price of 2nd buy by 1st package rr2.gems.01 rr2.gems.02 rr2.gems.02_promo35
  39. 39. In-depth analytics
  40. 40. Expand monetization 3 currencies: 1 hard, 2 soft soft currency buys: troops, buildings, spells hard currency buys: scrolls, speed-ups, soft currency, build space, worker slots strong focus on packages and monetization events players gets much hard currency for free at first and are encouraged to spend it fast
  41. 41. Expand monetization
  42. 42. Expand monetization
  43. 43. Position the game „darker“
  44. 44. Position the game „darker“
  45. 45. Position the game „darker“
  46. 46. Virality: FB and beyond
  47. 47. Exclusivity on iOS
  48. 48. Exclusivity on iOS
  49. 49. How to get featured Talk to the platform holders regularly Show them what your‘re doing: art, videos, prototypes Offer exclusivity, even if it‘s temporary Promise marketing spend (they like TV!) Ask their advice, when given follow it Implement platform-exlusive features (controllers, G+ etc.) Give them the type of polished game they crave!
  50. 50. Marketing
  51. 51. Successful release: No server breakdowns! 4,5 * on average Honored with Features by Apple and Google 1.5 M installs in the first 10 days But: Slightly overambitious first update
  52. 52. Successful release
  53. 53. Successful release
  54. 54. Again, this is how we work To achieve real success in the mobile market you need to… …have someone who does monetization and events …have someone who speaks to the platforms …have someone who does performance marketing …have someone charged with brand-building …have someone charged with social features …have a dedicated task force for server technology …have someone charged with deployment and loca …have a support unit …have a tough dev team able to deliver quality And all these roles have to communicate daily and as frictionless as possible.
  55. 55. Contact us! flaregames GmbH, Kaiserstr. 146, 76185 Karlsruhe, Germany flaregames.com | twitter.com/flaregames | facebook.com/flaregames

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