Hyper-kazualki and what they have to learn the gamedisyners / hubr

The hyper-casual genre captured mobile stories. Someone believes that he will soon die, but in the near future it is definitely not destined to come true. Only from October 2018 to March 2019 hyper-kasualki loaded …

Hyper-kazualki and what they can learn gamesens

The hyper-casual genre captured mobile stories. Someone believes that he will soon die, but in the near future it is definitely not destined to come true. Only from October 2018 to March 2019 hyper-kazualki uploaded more than 771 million times.

What makes the genre so successful and can something borrow something from it? Under the drive, the transfer of the analysis of the features of the gamedizayne, which make the genre of tighteners and popular.

Hyper What?

The hyper-casual is the simplest game with a tightening gameplay and minimalist art, which is usually played only with the help of "taps" on the screen. They have simple and understandable goals – to score more points, clean the levels and so on. Consider that this is a project designed on Game Jema, but with the best production quality and method.

If you (like me), follow the weekly updates of the App Store, you know that the hyper-kazalki is captured by the store. Because of minimalism and simplicity, developers can spend on the development of several months, if not weeks. This is part of a strategy that makes hyper-kasalki successful. The main publishers of hyper-casual games (Ketchapp, Voodoo, AppSolute Games) produce at least one game per week. And people adore them – hyper-kasualki uploaded more than 100 million times in 2018.

Give me to play this thing!

For simplicity, I will use some of the popular games as examples in the study of various regions of the genre.

Let's start with opening.

Bored, I leafed the tape Instagram and discovered Ball Blast – a short 30-second video with the main features made the game. The roller showed how easy it was to play and win. He began almost instantly – the small size of the game is very important for hypermarket-kazualki.

Example of a commercial of social networks

Now about how most users discover these games for themselves. Hyper-Kazalki strongly depend on user attraction campaigns (User Acquisition) in social networks. If someone browsing social networks, then it is most likely just boring. The user is looking for ways to entertain, and it is here that these hyper-kasualki act "knight in shining armor."

The idea is to quickly explain to a potential player that the game is fun and can be started instantly. Also great is the likelihood that they are sitting from the smartphone, and no one loves to download gigabytes (even through a good Wi-Fi). From here – you need a small file size.

Well, the player loaded the game and ready to start. Now what? This brings us to the next topic – Onboarding.

A player is enough about 7 seconds to decide how much fun game is and whether to leave it.Such a short time frame means that there is no need for a long tutorial and a multi-screen UI.

Ball Blast follows these rules. As soon as you launch the game, you will be presented with a screen that says swipe to shoot – and these are the only tutorials you will see. You touch the screen, the gun starts to shoot.

You start shooting and realize that the cannon can be moved horizontally. As your brain gets used to the "shoot and move" mechanics, several numbered balls will appear on the screen. You blow them up, they give coins, and large balls break into smaller ones. Simple, right?

The same goes for Ketchapp's Stack game, which loads instantly on the game screen with just a tap. You will immediately see how the square moves, and that when you click it falls on the stack of squares below, and any protruding part is cut off. Due to the simple mechanics, tutorials are not needed – the player learns from failures and improves his results. The gameplay is easy to master – just look at it.

Sign in and out

You know how easy and fast it can be to start playing a hyper-casual game. You take out your smartphone, unlock it, click on the game icon, and in a couple of seconds you are already playing.

It's what the brain wants when it's deadly bored. I play a session, fail a couple of times, set a record and collect rewards. This is a short feedback loop. Successful or unsuccessful actions are reported instantly. Combined with the upgrades (which we'll talk about later), you'll have a positive feedback that's fun and short at the same time.


Short feedback loop – player improves skills if he loses

If you've made a game with catchy gameplay and players love it, know that this is probably the only thing they're worried about. Ball Blast lets me in the game as soon as I start the game because it understands my needs – instant pleasure. No UI transitions, cutscenes, and texts. Even if I log into the game after a week, I know how to interact with it thanks to the simplest mechanics. Logging in and out of a gaming session is another important aspect that helps you succeed. On breaks, I play hyper-casual games – they do not require much time and deep immersion.

Give me all the power

Core gameplay is what keeps the player. It is simple, addictive and a desire to return to the game. What's fun about shooting multiple balls in Ball Blast? When I first saw the ad, I thought, “Okay, this is fun, but will it be fun in a couple of days?”. Answer: "Yes, it will, and it's still fun." We come to another key point – upgrades.

In Ball Blast, from the destroyed balls you get gems and coins – a kind of "software". The former are needed to buy cosmetics and do not greatly affect the gameplay, while the latter are used to upgrade the gun. There are four types of upgrades:

  1. Fire Speed: Increases fire speed.
  2. Fire Power: Increases damage.
  3. Coins Drop: Increases the value and number of incident coins.
  4. OFFLINE EARNINGS: Increases the number of coins earned in the background.

Levels are well balanced to maintain this cycle: there are those where you can fully demonstrate their strength, and there are others, where current power is not enough and have to be pumped.

Another game that is made on the same principle – Mr. Gun from Ketchapp. You destroy opponents, get coins, and use them to buy new more powerful weapons. You will quickly give a premium gun – this is how the game will explain about the upgrades in the form of a new weapon and their benefits.

I will use the opportunity and compare this type of hyper-kasualok with Dunzen Crawlers. If you played in Diablo or any other dungeon, you will understand. You have the first gear and weak enemies of the first level, which die from several blows. As they pass, LUT becomes cooler, and the enemies die already from one blow – you feel the power. But here you get to a new location and get acquainted with the opponents of the second level. Immediately you understand that your powerful equipment is not so powerful. Want to dominate again – and the cycle is repeated.

Ball Blast works on the same scheme, only instead of new equipment pumps the weapon. And the balance and pace of levels constantly maintain the need for improvements.

What if there are no improvements?

Upgrades are cool, but what about games in which they are not? That's a good question.

You know about the games where you need to put records among friends – these games are relying on a special kind of improvement. Take Stack as an example of which was talked above. The player has nothing to upgrade, but the more he plays, the better it turns out – he improves his skills. It motivates to play further. And if you make him compete with friends, then everything will become more personal and competitive – another reason to return to the game.

These implicit upgrades allow the player to feel smart or strong and give a sense of progress. The same applies to hyper-casual puzzles, where the player feels smart, solving more and more puzzles, which are becoming harder over time.

Now there are many hyper-kasualok, which bet on separate levels, and not on endless gameplay. Each Level has something unique with new challenges for a player who generate curiosity and desire to continue. This is also a great way to convey the progression.

Secret Ingredient

Until now, we talked about how hyper-kazualki attract players by advertising on social networks, hold, attract a simple, but tightening mechanics. It's all? No.

Magic and invisible illuminated eye element – satisfaction (Gratification).

To better understand the term from the point of view of gamedizayne, it can be defined as the form of visual / audio / emotional feedback, which the player receives after performing any action in the game. And this connection makes actions with joyful and meaningful.

Here are some examples:

Noticed how is the SUPER MEAT BOY character moving? When you press the jump button, the character smoothly goes into an arc, given the inertia (if it is available), and is accompanied by perfectly synchronized animation. Making this perfect jump through an obstacle or break, you feel satisfaction. Since the game requires a player fast and accurate movements, the entire gaming system was designed to please the user.

Nex Machina from Housemarque – When the bullet enters the enemy, you get confirmation of a successful hit through a thin white outbreak over the enemy, which dies with a large burst of cubes and accompanied by suitable sound effects. The murder of one enemy already gives a sense of satisfaction and euphoria, and now imagine the destruction of the boss. Various weapons, enemies and levels please player at every moment of the game.

Remember the ball blast? The movement of the gun, which is clearly followed by the finger, feedback on the shot across the balls and their decay to smaller, the effects of temporary bonuses and upgrades – all these elements work together to ensure pleasant feedback throughout the game.

Another wonderful example is Stack Fall (from Voodoo). You control the jumping ball: it falls and breaks blocks on its way when you touch and hold your finger on the screen. Spray paint, tactile feedback, destruction of blocks – here are some of the elements that bring pleasure and strengthen the impressions.

Regardless of actions, the player should feel satisfied. Imagine a platformer where the character has no touch animation after the jump to pass the change in the state or the effects of dust on Earth – it would be strange and boring. And it is not limited to only game actions, you can delight the user via UI using contextual effects and animation. One example is homescapes. After the level is completed, the whole set appears to emphasize the victory. It is even more nice when the level is heavy, and it is finally possible to pass.

A fascinating game cycle in combination with elements to enhance pleasure is most factors that are needed to create a fun hyper-casual game.

Conclusion

There was a time when I did not approve hyper-casual games, there were our reasons for: a non-existent art, weak originality, aggressive use of advertising and so on. It believed that innovative games every week in the App Store hid behind a huge stream of hyper-kasualok. I am the guy who believes that games are a kind of art, a new experience created with polishing and caution. It is possible so to finish work on your games I will leave years.

We, like gamedizaners, are proud to develop complex and deep games, but often neglect the simplest. Through hyper-kazualki, I drew attention to small details and opened new prospects when developing games. If you summarize key aspects of the genre: