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Shape CLub - GameDesign


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Hi, I'm new here.

I'm developing a 2D puzzle game to be released on facebook canvas, some game network if I can find any, ios and android through cocconjs.


It's a restart, I developed a working  prototype last year with EaselJS and gave up because of my work (www.real3d.fr if your are curious).

I know the game is engaging, I conducted a small beta test with 20 players and they played a lot even if the game was hard as hell some even beat my own high score.


This time I really plane to finish it using Phaser.


I'm here to discuss game design more than code, the game mechanics are done, the game is working in a endless mode, somewhat hard

. I have a few option:


- lower the difficulty at the beginning and rise it each N action (tetris,2048)


- a map with levels, players finish a level each N action (candy crush) but without time limit


- keep both mode and call them history and time attack.


- release the 2 mode as 2 different  games with a slightly different graphics. Then promoting only the more successful one...



Why is that important ? Ads


In the time attack mode, there will only be a banner that no one would want to click because of the concentration the game requires.But if they reach a High-score, players will ( I hope) share their score on Facebook, leading more installation.


in History mode, there will be a small banner but also full screen ads between levels, I can also "force" players to share the game / ask for lives, hints on Facebook (evil I know)



What do you think ? is there other options? Do you have number regarding player acquisition ? Does releasing a free with ads and a paid version without ads is still a good choice ? How to make such decisions ?






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Well the forum ate my message...


Ads during loading screens, that's what's the most acceptable, IMO, the rest is horrible.

It has a double advantage:


1) It doesn't completely ruin the game atmosphere, loadings are boring and often empty anyway.

2) It renders lengthy loading more usefull.


Make sure the loading last at least 5 seconds or so, even if everything is already loaded.

But I guess that's not that trivial to implement, while probably feasible.



Paid version without ads and free version with ads seems a good idea.





Ads at the beginning of the game and at the end eventually.


But banner during the game, all the time, is just borderline greedy and definitely ugly/annoying.

But that's just my opinion.

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well my game is simple, all gfx are loaded in the first second, one font + smothing like 1 Mo of gfx... but it sounds like ads between levels.

I agree that banners are Ugly, but without them, what's the point of a paid version ?


My game is pretty hard, I was thinking to reward player with hints when they share the game..  but without ads regenerating revenue even million of user are useless

Some people, (me) don't want to annoy friends, and I see myself often looking at video-ads to earn in-game money in plants vs zombies for example, do you do that ?


Is limiting the player to 5 "credits"/day is okay ? candy crush does it, seems to pay.

To be clear, I'm not making game for fun, I clearly need to find an other source of income, call it greedy if you want :)

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No no, making money is alright, I have nothing against people doing it for the money, quite the contrary.

The thing is, if ads ruins the game in any way, I just leave the game, not to mention that it is bad practice, regarding ad revenues, I'll expand on that later.


So yeah, smart monetization systems are somehow an whole category by themselves, worth some tutorials.


As I said, ads during loadings are fine, that's their place I think, like between each levels "<<<please wait while level is being generated... >>ad banner<< loading % completion>>>", even if there's nothing to load at all, ie, fake loading of 5 secs, it's cool, it's during the break you know, kind of intermission/interlude.


Of course if that loading happens every 3 secs it's a problem.

At the game over screen it's also ok.

Before the launch of the game... Why not, but it's borderline a turn off, there's a risk that the user just hit back button, IMHO.


"I agree that banners are Ugly, but without them, what's the point of a paid version ?"


I guess you mean what's the point of a free version without ads ?

But anyway, even if the paid version is ad free for $5 to $15 bucks (random price), since it will probably be pirated... It's not a good idea.

Besides, you'll probably earn more with ads on the long run.

So let's forget a "no ad" game concept.



Ads yes, but well placed, otherwise it spoils the prodcut, and therefore, it reduces ad revenues... Which would be unfortunate isn't it ?

That's what I implied, above, by "bad practice".



"Some people, (me) don't want to annoy friends, and I see myself often looking at video-ads to earn in-game money in plants vs zombies for example, do you do that ?"


No I don't, but I guess I would, ONLY IF, I was into/addicted to plants vs zombies already, so I would have an interest to do that.

If I play it for the first time and the video ad can't be skipped, I leave, I don't care, there are millions of games, I want to play something fun, right now.

Now if the ad can be skipped, it's ok.




"Is limiting the player to 5 "credits"/day is okay ? candy crush does it, seems to pay."

If it works then why not.


But I don't really like it.


Why ?


Because I want people to play it as often as possible, I want people to hang on it and in the community all day long.

Like in a casino, I don't want players to leave, I want them to stay.

Even more if there's a multiplayer part to come or already implemented.

Multiplayer puzzle game ?

Why not, depends how.



A more subtile formula I prefer is the energy/fuel to reload (I know it's a puzzle game, but let me continue).

You have your 5 units per day, for free, if you want more you pay, otherwise you can continue to play, but you play at a disadvantage, you become somehow slower or weaker, you have an handicap, but it's still playable.


How to adapt that in a puzzle game...


When the 5 units/credits limit is reached, you have less time to solve it, for instance, or just a time limit, while when you pay, there's no time limit, or a greater time limit.

Which is perfectly frustrating "Damn, I was so close to succeed, if only I had paid this time..."

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