How to create a successful gaming app?

Avinash Sharma April 27, 2022

Making a gaming app has become the latest trend in the mobile app development space. In the 2 years when people were confined to their homes because of the COVID-driven quarantine, gaming apps saw an unprecedented rise. 

A number of gaming app statistics came into the picture highlighting the importance of making a game app. 

  • 25% of the iOS apps and 21% of Android apps downloaded on devices are games
  • Gaming apps make up for 43% of smartphone usage
  • 62% of the people install a game on their phone in the first week of purchasing it
  • 78% of the gamers are Android users
  • The active number of global mobile gamers is more than 2.2 billion
  • 57.9% of the games that are played across devices are puzzle games
  • Women, more than men, spend money on in-game content

Between these statistics and the overall user inclination towards mobile games, the rise in android game app development can be seen to be on an evident high. 

We are sure that this rise in apps hasn’t gone unnoticed to you, as an entrepreneur. However, this event is also a sign of unprecedented competition in space. 

In this article, we are going to look into the ways that answer how to make a gaming app successful. 

Now, building a highly successful gaming app would require you to start with deciding on the game type/ game genre first. 

Types of gaming apps

The gaming space is on an unprecedented growth drive whether it is in terms of the number of active apps, the downloads counts, revenues generated, or the time spent by the consumers. A contributory factor of this growth rate can be accounted to the types of gaming apps.

Betting apps 

Sports betting is a hot trend across the world. Led by soccer and cricket, these apps become very active when there is an ongoing match. The category is also very active in cards-based games. While illegal in a number of regions, the US has made sport betting legal, increasing the demand of game developers there. Some examples of these apps can be seen in Las Atlantis and BetUS. 

Adventure apps

These are ideal for players looking for challenging gameplays. In addition to war and fast action, adventure games also combine reflex testing and puzzle-solving skills, while making gamers follow a character or become one. Some examples of these apps can be seen in Pokemon GO, The Room: Old Sins, etc. 

Arcade gaming apps

These game types majorly focus on the gameplay and not the content and character story. A majority of them give players short levels to cross, which become challenging as they progress. Some examples of these apps can be seen in Subway Surfers, Fruit Ninja, and Angry Birds.

Role-playing games apps

These games are best for players that love long gameplays. These are multifaceted stories, a majority of which come with different journeys, lengthy storylines, multiple characters, and several hours of play. Some examples of these apps can be seen in Ragnarok and Dungeons and Dragons. 

Multiplayer online battle arena apps

These games are played by two teams where every player maintains a character. The goal when playing a MOBA game is to destroy the other team’s base through computer-controlled units. Some examples of these apps can be seen in PUBG, Arena of Valor, and Mobile Legends. 

These are majorly the five categories that app entrepreneurs choose from when they decide to make a game app. However, the space is on a fast evolving stage, so we can hope to see more apps coming up in a few years. 

I am sure at this point you would have a basic idea of which category you are going to initiate your entrepreneurial journey in. But, I would like to reiterate that the competition in the gaming sector is high and to meet and eliminate this cut-throat competition, you would have to know how to successfully make game app for android. Although your android app development company with gaming app development expertise would help you get there, let us save you some time. 

Let us get to the part next. 

How to create a game app that is highly successful?

While it helps to partner with an iOS or android app development company with a dedicated game focused development team, it helps to know the ways you can make your game app successful. 

1. Build an idea 

The Play Store and App Store is brimming with gaming apps with 477,877 and 316,802 active games respectively. Now although you have an idea of the category you want to enter, brainstorming is still required. You would have to see what is trending in the category, what are people liking about those apps, at what stage are they paying in the app, and what marketing efforts are they responding to. 

A thorough market research can help you know what your players are used to and looking for. 

2. Build a story

Games like PUBG and Clash of Clans get massive downloads because the games come with a story. Building a story which players feel a part of and look forward to seeing how it progresses is what plays a key role in the success of a gaming application. 

So when you answer how to make a game app with a strong character and gameplay story, you are able to garner the players’ attention and keep them hooked. 

3. Keep it intuitive  

When you make a game app, it is pivotal to pay attention to the simplicity when it comes to the control and learnability. It shouldn’t be too complex for players to understand and find their ways around. 

Another pointer to consider here is taking care of the multiple screen sizes and the platform-specific virtual buttons’ locations. Imagine a player exiting the game mid way simply because they clicked on an element which is placed on the exit button. You can save this by platform-specific android game app development. 

4. Make it addictive

What makes a game addictive is a mix of the storyline and the type of challenges. But what is generally overlooked is the impact of prizes and leaderboards. Considering this, your game should have – 

  • An interesting storyline with character histories
  • Challenges’ levels getting difficult as they progress
  • Reward points and powers

5. Have an immaculate design 

Having a great game design in terms of user movement and the UI/UX is what keeps the players hooked to your app. So, one of the primary answers of how to make a game app for android would lie in getting your designs right. 

There are a number of businesses that are moving towards AR/VR based gaming structure. While it is a great space to be in, you can also start with something small and have interactive elements and situation-specific sound effects. Whichever design you decide to go with, the graphics must at all times go in hand with the logic of the game. 

6. Have a monetization strategy 

Year-on-year, gaming apps continue to be one of the most high grossing categories of the mobile app space. However, for a new game app entrepreneur it is important to know how to be a part of this statistics. 

Here are the few app monetization strategies you can choose from when you answer how to make a game app for iPhone or Android. 

  • Advertisements 

Used majorly in the case of free gaming apps, the strategy helps businesses earn revenue from the mobile ads which shows up in a game. These ads can be of multiple formats ranging from – rewarded ads, playable ads, native banner ads, or interstitial advertisements. 

  • In-app purchase 

This monetization strategy is one of the most common ones. Here the players pay for crossing a level, buy a character, or purchase an add-on facility that would make their game better, etc. What helps here is giving them a bundle of features for in-app purchase. It can be a set of coins, a mix of coins and power-ups, or a combination of power-ups and characters. 

7. Build an MVP first

Developing an MVP is a smart way to test your game app idea and attract investors. Your MVP need not have all the assets, levels, or power-ups you plan to include in your app. It just needs to be a simplified version of your game that can help you improve on your application on the go.   

[Also Read: How to submit an app to Google Play Store?

So here were the seven factors that can help with making your gaming app successful. While this is on the players’ ends, there is one thing that has to be considered in the backend when you are looking for answers on how to create a game app – the tech stack. 

How to make a game app: The tech stack

Whether you make a game app for android or iOS, the gaming engines and tools are more or less the same. Here’s what they are. 

Construct 3

The demand and adoption of Construct 3 is on a rise because of the simple drag and drop facility the gaming engine comes with. It lowers the dependency on writing codes and debugging routines by giving a readymade development framework. 

GameMaker Studio 2

The platform combines programming and the many drag and drop facilities making it easy for both developers and non-coders to build games. It gives developers the space to integrate their idea in a C like scripting language to explore their creativity. 

Unity 

For people looking for a free game making platform, Unity comes across as the best answer. Supporting both 3D and 2D game types, the platform is highly flexible and powerful for developers who are looking to make a highly interactive gaming environment. 

Godot Engine

The platform is adored by the game developers for the extensive support it offers through documentations and community. Used for both 3D and 2D games, the platform comes with a remarkable clean code and a performance quality which is often touted to be better than Unity. 

With this, we have looked into both the frontend and backend of how to create a game app that is highly successful and profitable. Now, I know what you must be thinking, “While you have answered how I can make my game app successful, I wonder how much does it cost to make a game app?” Good thought. Get in touch with our game development team to get an answer to it. 

Parting notes

Noting what we covered here and some personal experiences that we have gathered by being a game development company, if we had to summarize what makes a game app successful, we would say it is a mix of these elements –

  • Amazing graphics
  • Great storyline and character histories
  • Interesting challenges and updates
  • App response time
  • Easy to follow tutorials
  • Well-strategized rewards points 
  • Time-tested monetization strategies

Achieving all of this with an in-house team of developers can be difficult. You would need people who think like gamers and have the right skillset to deliver what you envision and what your players need. We are that team. Talk to our game developers today!

THE AUTHOR
Avinash Sharma
VP- R&D
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