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Story of Warlords: Bringing a turn-based strategy game to mobile

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About three years ago we set out on a mission: We wanted to bring a round-based strategy game, a genre that most gamers so far mainly enjoyed on PCs, to mobile. Today that mission is nearly completed with Warlords having been soft launched in various countries and showing very promising data. This may all sound easy enough, but the truth is that it was a hell of a ride for the team and there were times when we weren´t even sure if the project would continue. Along the way, we´ve learned many valuable things which we believe in the end made the difference and led to the numbers we now see. Wilhelm, Head of Studio and Product Lead for Warlords, will share these learnings in his talk answering the following questions: What set screws did we touch to make the session structure, pacing and content consumption work on mobile? Why different meta game systems are crucial? And finally how sticking to your game vision from start to end can make you survive such a ride.

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Story of Warlords: Bringing a turn-based strategy game to mobile

  1. 1. 5 hits to date Bubble Island Monster World Diamond Dash Pearl’s Peril Jelly Splash
  2. 2. Where did it all start? Crisis 1: Core game Crisis 2: Meta game Summary of what we‘ve learnt
  3. 3. Philip Bang
  4. 4. Enthusiasm - meter
  5. 5. Basic pitch
  6. 6. • Round Based Battles • Strategic Army Development • Fantasy World • PvP Focus • Dynamic World • Timer-based Monetization • Mobile Accessibility Basic pitch
  7. 7. Build the strongest fantasy army to dominate your opponents in epic turn-based battles that put your tactical skills to the test. Vision statement
  8. 8. Battle Rewards Improved Army ResearchKingdomBuildings Capital City
  9. 9. Build the strongest fantasy army to dominate your opponents in epic turn-based battles that put your tactical skills to the test.
  10. 10. Battle Rewards Improved Army ResearchKingdomBuildings Capital City
  11. 11. Battle Rewards Improved Army
  12. 12. Battle Rewards Improved Army Heroes of Might & Magic Mobile F2P
  13. 13. Enthusiasm - meter
  14. 14. Enthusiasm - meter
  15. 15. Evergreen
  16. 16. Evergreen
  17. 17. Enthusiasm - meter
  18. 18. Dave Rohrl
  19. 19. Enthusiasm - meter
  20. 20. Battle plan 1. Attack! 2. Repeat.
  21. 21. Solve it with autoplay?
  22. 22. Solve it with autoplay?
  23. 23. Build the strongest fantasy army to dominate your opponents in epic turn-based battles that put your tactical skills to the test.
  24. 24. Why does one want autoplay?
  25. 25. “My choices don’t matter anyway! Just get it over with so I get my L00T!”
  26. 26. Speed Meaningful choice
  27. 27. Speed “Play a battle in less time than it would take to watch one”
  28. 28. A Game Review
  29. 29. „Make it 1000 times faster than the fastest version!“ Animation speed: 1x vs 2x vs 4x
  30. 30. Hoplite
  31. 31. Move #1 Move #2 Move #3 Move #4 Move #5 Enemy move Move #1 Move #2 Move #3 Move #4 Move #5 Enemy move Can be faster than real-time Move #1 Move #2 Move #3 Move #4 Move #5 Enemy move
  32. 32. Speed Meaningful choice
  33. 33. Enthusiasm - meter
  34. 34. Meaningful choice “Maximize the number of layers in battle”
  35. 35. Example
  36. 36. 12 layers
  37. 37. 1/12
  38. 38. 2/12
  39. 39. 3/12
  40. 40. 4/12
  41. 41. 5/12 500 3
  42. 42. Victory conditions6/12
  43. 43. XP earning Participate Deal damage Killing blows 7/12
  44. 44. Recovery times <50% 50-99% 100% 8/12
  45. 45. 9/12
  46. 46. 10/12
  47. 47. Battle modes11/12 Annihilation Escort Survival etc.
  48. 48. 12/12
  49. 49. Multiplicative content Game modes Unique regiments & Abilities Items Tile sets & unique tiles Layers summary Battle & Meta rules Unit classes (RPS) Basic rules Terrain effects Special tiles & objects Stack sizes Recovery timers XP earning Victory conditions
  50. 50. Example
  51. 51. Speed Meaningful choice
  52. 52. Fun a thousand times?
  53. 53. „Hey, you guys should totally add terrain bonuses!“
  54. 54. Understandability “You can’t enjoy what doesn’t exist”
  55. 55. Build the strongest fantasy army to dominate your opponents in epic turn-based battles that put your tactical skills to the test.
  56. 56. Enthusiasm - meter
  57. 57. Time for Review “There is potential, but will it ever be done?”
  58. 58. Enthusiasm - meter
  59. 59. Issues with the meta game
  60. 60. Main considerations: 1. Meaningful choice 2. Strong ties battle  meta 3. Multiple avenues of progression
  61. 61. Time for Review
  62. 62. Enthusiasm - meter
  63. 63. Enthusiasm - meter
  64. 64. D1 D2 D3 D4 D5 D6 D7
  65. 65. Enthusiasm - meter

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