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OpenClass - Social Gaming

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Presentation on social gaming at OpenClass Training Meetup by Mr. Sudhanshu Aggarwal (ex-product manager at Zynga). Covers best practices on social gaming.

Presentation on social gaming at OpenClass Training Meetup by Mr. Sudhanshu Aggarwal (ex-product manager at Zynga). Covers best practices on social gaming.

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  • Tons of companies in the web and mobile based social gaming area.Zynga is the undisputed leader in web gamesRovio, Ngmoco and Chillingo are big players, but no winner yet in mobile games
  • Turn-based – A social game is not social unless you are playing with another person. As such, social games enable users to take turns. Turn-based games are nothing new but in the current environment, turn-based takes on a new meaning. Keep in mind that turn-based is not a requirement, just a frequent feature found in “social games”.Awareness of others’ actions in games – I honestly believe this was the catalyst for “social gaming.” When you could see in your news feed that your friend just bit another one of your friends to turn them into a vampire, suddenly there was social context, making you more likely to interact with the game.Casual gaming – “Social gaming” is not really for so called “hardcore gamers”. As it is currently referred to, social gaming is for the average user and not for someone who plans on playing 24 hours a day. Then again, that may be an unexpected side effect.Multiplayer – This is a no brainer. You can’t be social without there being other people so whether it’s two or two hundred users, the game has to be multiplayer for it to be social.Based on Social Platforms – The final component that I believe typifies “social games” is that they are based around social platforms. In the context of social gaming, social platforms provide users with an identity and also can provide the backbone for simple forms of communication (such as notifications, etc).
  • Facebook – The Social Platform that powered Zynga. Notifications, Requests, Feed (everything was utilized to the maximum)Amazon – The only way to have scaled without a constant down-time and annoying users. Today Zynga has Zcloud and Amazon. How they transition.MyMiniLife – The gaming engine that helped scale FarmVille. The first web based game to be this big.
  • Graphics – Very strong focus on graphics and how to make every interaction as smooth and fun as possible. Team of 100’s of graphic designers and artists that work on creating as highly detailed characters as possible from every angle and close ups.Game mechanics – cracked the harvesting problem by making it variable. After that innovated on many mechanics like energy, quests and help.Data – Someone could write a whole book about how deep Zynga Analytics run, but this is also a very proprietary method and technology. Everything is built in-house and there is a team of data analysts who mine this data and figure out what works and what doesn’t. They track everything from clicks to page views and many other things. Called Event tracking for those who are interested in exploring this further.
  • Freemium“Apple enabled in-app purchases from its app store in the fall of 2009, allowing many developers to utilize the “freemium” model, in which the app is free to the user and the game can be enjoyed as is, or enhanced with additional virtual goods. In-app purchases include additional characters, enhancements, powers, and game play levels. Where a paid game may generate revenue from the sale price of the game from $0.99 to about $2.99 or more, a freemium game can actually earn greater revenues in the long run due to its potential ongoing stream of revenue from in-app purchases. Games tracked across 21 iPhone game makers in June 2010 by market research firm Flurry earned on average $14.66 per user per year. GigaOm estimated in November 2010 that 34% of the top 100 grossing apps (all types) on the iPhone used the freemium model.”While the freemium model seems great in theory, paid games currently rule the industry, having brought in a whopping 92.5% of U.S. mobile gaming revenue in 2010, according to eMarketer. On the other hand, eMarketer predicts that revenue from free, ad-supported games will only amount to a measly 12.3% by 2014, not a significant growth. With ad-supported games lacking umph in coming years and freemium apps providing a higher potential revenue for publishers, it seems natural that publishers will continue to innovate into the freemium space in hopes of increasing profits. As a result, we may see a balancing out of revenue between paid and freemium apps in coming years.
  • Freemium“Apple enabled in-app purchases from its app store in the fall of 2009, allowing many developers to utilize the “freemium” model, in which the app is free to the user and the game can be enjoyed as is, or enhanced with additional virtual goods. In-app purchases include additional characters, enhancements, powers, and game play levels. Where a paid game may generate revenue from the sale price of the game from $0.99 to about $2.99 or more, a freemium game can actually earn greater revenues in the long run due to its potential ongoing stream of revenue from in-app purchases. Games tracked across 21 iPhone game makers in June 2010 by market research firm Flurry earned on average $14.66 per user per year. GigaOm estimated in November 2010 that 34% of the top 100 grossing apps (all types) on the iPhone used the freemium model.”While the freemium model seems great in theory, paid games currently rule the industry, having brought in a whopping 92.5% of U.S. mobile gaming revenue in 2010, according to eMarketer. On the other hand, eMarketer predicts that revenue from free, ad-supported games will only amount to a measly 12.3% by 2014, not a significant growth. With ad-supported games lacking umph in coming years and freemium apps providing a higher potential revenue for publishers, it seems natural that publishers will continue to innovate into the freemium space in hopes of increasing profits. As a result, we may see a balancing out of revenue between paid and freemium apps in coming years.
  • Not all bad. Zynga.org is the non-profit arm which tried to help around the world in many ways. The idea is solidarity over charity.

Transcript

  • 1. OpenClass Session – 16th July 2011
    OpenClass Training Meetup -
    Social Gaming and Zynga
    Speaker : Mr. SudhanshuAggarwal
    www.openclass.in
  • 2. Overview
    About Me
    What is Social Gaming?
    What made it work for Zynga?
    RewardVille (Case Study)
    Acquire, Engage, Retain
  • 3. Social Gaming – Lessons Learnt
  • 4. Disclaimer: This presentation is solely my personal views and opinions. Please take everything with a grain of salt because I am no expert on Social Gaming.
  • 5. About Me
    - Founded in 2007
    - Facebook Apps and iPhone Games
    - Product Manager
    - RewardVille.com
    - Product Based Company
    - Web and Mobile based products and games
  • 6. Companies
  • 7. What is Social Gaming?
    Turn based
    Awareness
    Casual Gaming
    Multiplayer
    Social Platform
  • 8. Zynga’s Success (External)
  • 9. Zynga’s Success (Internal)
  • 10. Case Study
  • 11. Trends
    Freemium
    Smartphones and Tablets
    Multiplayer and Social Interactions
    Word of Mouth
    Luck
  • 12. Trends
    Freemium
    Smartphones and Tablets
    Multiplayer and Social Interactions
    Word of Mouth
    Luck
  • 13. Predictions
  • 14. Gaming for Good
  • 15. Useful Links
    Gaming Datawww.appdata.com
    Newswww.insidesocialgames.com
  • 16. Stay Connected
    Sudhanshu Aggarwal+91 8860003589sudhanshu@fizzysoftware.com
    Fizzy Software Pvt. Ltd. 304 Millennium Plaza, Tower B, Gurgaon, 122002, Haryana, India
    www.fizzysoftware.com