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Revisiting Android


May 28, 2013 Article Start Previous Page 10 of 10
 

The Game Bakers

Emeric Thoa (CEO)

Prior dev background (platforms): iOS, Android, Xbox 360, PS3, Wii
Shipped Android titles:
Squids, Squids Wild West
Preferred toolset:
Cocos2D, Unity

Is fragmentation still a major issue for you?

It's not a worry as such, it's just additional work we need to plan for. We know we will have to deal with several versions: an HD and SD version to match the different capabilities of the devices, and a freemium and a premium version to match the different stores' requirements. We are still learning what's worth doing and what's not, but so far we want to believe that reaching the widest audience possible is the way to go.

How have your games sold on Android?

We released Squids on Android as a freemium as part of our sponsoring deal with Tapjoy, and made probably around $700! That looks like a disaster, obviously, but I wouldn't blame Android for that. Squids was not designed as a freemium game at all and it's only natural that it didn't succeed as a free-to-play game. The sequel, Squids Wild West, is releasing March 8 and will be a premium app this time.

Which app stores do you support? How do your Android sales compare to your sales on other platforms?

Squids was a success on iOS, but as I said, it released as a premium, so it's hard to compare. But surprisingly enough, the IAPs are also better on iOS. The conversion rate is higher, and so is the ARPPU. My bet is that Apple users are more used to paying for digital content (iTunes and the App Store were there before Google Play, for instance), but I believe that this difference is going to fade. We'll be able to compare better with our next game, Combo Crew, as it'll be a simultaneous launch on iOS and Android.

Action Button Entertainment

Brent Porter (cofounder)

Prior dev background (platforms): iOS, Android
Shipped Android titles:
TNNS
Preferred toolset:
Whatever best fits the job

Is fragmentation still a major issue for you?

I guess it only becomes a problem when you already have something built and suddenly realize, "Oh gosh, I have to get this to work on 100 other devices now." If you do some planning from the beginning there shouldn't be too much reason to worry.

Do you have any tips for optimizing the Android dev process?

Again, understanding from the beginning that a lot of elements will have to be flexible helps. I think this is why you see a lot of games with resolution-independent art styles. Some people get grossed out by something that "looks like a Flash game," but when you are dealing with different screen sizes and resolutions it suddenly makes a lot of sense to go with something flexible.

How do your Android sales compare to your sales on other platforms?

There exists a perception that you aren't going to see Android consumers make purchases like you might elsewhere. I guess it has to come from somewhere! Maybe Android users are more likely to invest in a certain type of game. This might explain why you hear about vastly different numbers from different developers and their experience with Android vs. iOS. Again, I'm not quite comfortable drawing definite conclusions.

Overall, have you found Android dev to be worth the extra work?

Of course Android dev is worth it if you think you will be getting some attention. And everyone wants their game to get attention so I guess the answer is always sort of yes? It's difficult to see beforehand if a particular project is going to definitely require and make money with an Android version. I mean, everyone wants their game to sell like Jetpack Joyride, and Halfbrick Studios definitely benefits from getting their game in front of more people.

Maybe there's an even more important question. Do comments like "God, when will we get an Android version!!??" and "I cared until I realized it was only for iOS, lol" put stress and fear into your heart? If so, it's time to start planning your future in Android development!


Article Start Previous Page 10 of 10

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