General Considerations for Game Apps Design

game-developersWith the popularity of smartphone apps increasing constantly, your app could be the next big thing and could turn your life around. However, if you are to have such an opportunity, you need to keep in mind the following five tips when designing a game app. By implementing the following tips you will be on the right track towards developing your iOS and/or Android app giving it more of a chance of being a success.

Artwork and design

Whilst gameplay is important, it is also vital that you put some time into the artwork, creating attractive backgrounds, scenes or text. These thought-out ‘tricks' attract customers' eyes to pick their apps over others available in the market. The more you can positively utilise the devices functionalities, the higher your ranking will be in the respective app stores and will leave a lasting impression on the gamer.

The Flowers game displays some fun, attractive graphics
The Flowers game displays fun, attractive graphics

To monetise or not to monetise

You should decide fairly early on in the development process whether or not users will have to pay to play or unlock certain levels or power-ups. Keep in mind the recent successes of Zynga Games and other development firms and the way their games are monetised to make huge profit. Whilst you can be successful charging for a game, it may be better for the future of your first app to offer it for free or make at least a free version available. One way in which to attract downloads associated with free apps whilst receiving money is to make add-ons such as power-ups available for sale whilst the main game remains free.

Social factor

Social media such as Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are useful outlets to promote your gaming app and should try to build in ‘share' or ‘tweet' functions in order to increase your title's recognition. Implementing a social aspect could increase the popularity of your iOS or Android app allowing gamers the opportunity to share their progress in the game or compete against friends. Make a remarkable app that people will comment about, share with other and attracts their friends to play. This will help you stand out in what is an extremely competitive market.

Farmville has taken advantage of social gaming
Farmville has taken advantage of social gaming

Keep it clean and simple

If you don't keep the gamer's attention for more than 10 seconds they will move past your app, and download another. Unlike console games, apps are usually either free or cost near to nothing, so in general, they don't instil the same feeling of commitment as expensive video games. Ensure that your app is not confusing and is easy to use. If you begin to notice large bounce rates; this is usually an indication that you need to change your app in order to stop people exiting the app almost immediately after downloading it. Make your instructions easy to understand and try to limit the amount of instructions. A good test is to give it to a young child without telling them what they have to do and seeing if they can use it.

Short and fast

Remembering that the majority of your gamers will be playing in short bursts and in their free time, try and implement short but challenging levels. These levels allow gamers the opportunity to progress even if they have a short period of gameplay and the challenge of it keeps them interested. Fast play functionality ensures that the gamers simply don't click off due to long loading times. Having to read extensive instructions adds to the chances of a gamer turning a game off. You should aim to have a pick-up and go functionality increasing the game time within the short burst of time that the gamer has to play.

There are many more guidelines and rules that gaming apps need to adhere by and which will enable you to engage and attract a wider and more enthusiastic gamer. The gaming app world is flourishing and growing every day meaning that your app could turn into the next big gaming craze overnight!

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