Introduction• What is “SNS” game? – Based on SNS platform, simple, easy to engage, millions of players, viral factor.• Differences between MMO and SNS – Hard-core players vs. first-time players. – Higher interaction & community. – ARPPU: MMO is 10x more than SNS. – Paying rate: MMO is 3x more than SNS.
Introduction• Why we need an “MMOSNS” game? – High ARPU + huge user base = success! – Rapid development. – We cannot catch up other developers without original games.
How it all started?• Preliminary analysis at the end of 2010 pointed out: – A new trend: web-based games. – Casual games took over all game rooms. – Huge SNS user base.• What is our next game going to be?
Customers• So we will have a new casual game, but who will be our customers? – Teen & students: from age 13 to 24. – Playing time: 2-4 hours per day. – Spend 150k-250k VND per month.• And they‟re interesting in what? – Appearance, outfit. – Bikes, vehicles, phones. – Dating, making friends. – Music, entertainment.
Market Research• Online Survey: – 3 phases: total ~70k samples. – Multiple direction questions, different sets for MMO and SNS users Độ tuổi 3% 5% 12% Dưới 13 tuổi 18% 13 tuổi – 15 tuổi 16 tuổi – 18 25% tuổi 19 tuổi – 22 tuổi 37%
And the game is …• Code name: X11.• Kick started on April 2011.• New genre: mix of – Simulation: farm, city. – Social: interaction, help friends. – Casual: multi-player mini games.• Goal: – Alpha version by end of 2011. – ARPPU: comparable to ACG games (>100k VND).
Original game loop design Earn money • Do job on interior • Collect money Work CashHome Cow Collect money Mini games Shop Entertain • Clothing • Mini-game • Pet • Music • Vehicle • Video • InteriorPet Player CoffeeShop Space Vehicle Shop Cinema Social Decorate • Chat • Apparel • Interact • Home • Show down
Key Selling Points• Cute art style, 3D animation.• „SNS look & feel‟: simple gameplay, virality design.• Real-time interaction.• Character and house decorations.• Room-based, contents-oriented, easy to expand.
TimelinePrototype April June August April June Oct 11 Dec 11 Feb 12 11 11 11 12 12
Prototype• Technical prototype released at the end of April.• Basic game design for avatar decoration and farming.• 3D team slowly move from TTK to casual style.• 2D team drawing truly „2D‟ concept.
Timeline Prototype April June August April June Oct 11 Dec 11 Feb 12 11 11 11 12 12Pre-Production
Pre-Production• Prototype looks good, but what about the real one?• This is what we got after 2 months.
Pre-Production• Issues: – Customizable room graphic quality is much lower than the prototype. – Farming with an avatar is not fun enough! 3D is completely different! Work-around solution: forget the farming and economy, just focus on avatar and home decoration first.
Timeline 1st build with UI Prototype April June August April June Oct 11 Dec 11 Feb 12 11 11 11 12 12Pre-Production The Sims Social went beta!
Timeline 1st built with Announced UI PigFarm launch at Japan press Prototype conference April June August April June Oct 11 Dec 11 Feb 12 11 11 11 12 12Pre-Production Server Integration
Sep-Oct 11• Improved graphics by adding sfx and lightmap for objects.• Simple design for game economy.• Globalization framework.• Cartoon art style redefined.• Game server intergrated.
Timeline 1st built with Public UI Alpha! Prototype April June August April June Oct 11 Dec 11 Feb 12 11 11 11 12 12Pre-Production Not really Internal Server Alpha Integration
Internal Alpha• Issues: – Negative feedback on graphics quality. – Servers did not pass stress tests Unable to release to public alpha.Major changes in art – Art style: more deformed, detailed texture. – Production pipeline: 3d artists now have more room for creativity.
Timeline 1st built with Internal UI Alpha Prototype April June August April June Oct 11 Dec 11 Feb 12 11 11 11 12 12Pre-Production The New Server X11 Integration
X11 Reboot• Art: – New character models. – Re-work on 70% of home decoration and outfit, 90% public scenes.• Tech: – Switched from framework to feature driven development. – Minimal download is top priority.• Design: – Core game loop suiatble for SNS/SLG and PvP users. – Clear monetization points and strategy.• Process: – Multiple Scrum teams for features. – Kanban for production team.
New Design Aggressive Casual users Both users• Do jobs • Do public • Chat, interact• Earn money jobs • Make friend• Buy home • PvE, collect • Invite friends décor, outfit. skills. • Complete• Compete by • Fusion collections house values skill, outfit. • Gain levels • Compete by PvP
Timeline 1st built with Internal Alpha Closed Beta UI Prototype April June August April June Oct 11 Dec 11 Feb 12 11 11 11 12 12Pre-Production The New Server X11 Integration
Crunch mode for CB• 1 sprint per 2 weeks.• Parallel features development by 4 scrum teams.• Code refactor by framework team.• Daily scrum meeting, weekly overnight camp.• Finally, CB launched on June 20
The barrier~60% drop in users due to slow Flash loading and Unityweb plugin installation
Lesson learned• Purely graphics prototype may cost you a lot of re-work later.• Agile process requires an Agile-supported framework from the beginning.• Dedicated asset management and game balance really helps.• Agile spirit (not process) worked well with mixed-level engineering team.