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  1. #1
    Senior Member A1ka1inE's Avatar
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    Question Earning the main in game currency without purchase

    Hey guys, I've got a game in the works and I'm trying to nail down the in-game currency.
    There is one currency - "lives".
    The player starts with a bunch of lives and can lose them one at a time through playing the game.
    The players can complete actions like "Like us in Facebook" etc to earn some lives and earning achievements earns lives too.
    The only other way to earn lives is to buy them through IAP, with different bundles available.

    Now I want to also put in a mechanic where the user may earn lives gradually outside of the main game. I've seen the "timer" idea being used in a lot of big titles like Coin Dozer and Candy Crush for example.
    I want to implement the same sort of idea, but I don't think the users of this game would be happy with a timer concept.

    I was thinking of creating a more simple mini game where the player can earn lives (it's quite hard to complete the mini game levels successfully, so it acts as an inconvenience).
    Now I haven't seen this idea used in a game before and I'm wondering if that's because it's against Google Play's Content Policy: Google Play
    It states at the Gambling section:
    Gambling: We don’t allow content or services that facilitate online gambling, including but not limited to, online casinos, sports betting and lotteries, or games of skill that offer prizes of cash or other value.
    Does the part in bold mean my concept would be against their terms? Or am I over-thinking things?

    Would also be interested in your ideas over my mini-game idea! I was also considering using Tapjoy to fill the gap too. Has that worked for anyone else in conjunction with IAP?

    Thanks
    Last edited by A1ka1inE; 2013-08-29 at 10:12 PM. Reason: typo

  2. #2
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    I am doing the same design for my next game at the moment.

    Here is what my thoughts were: Copy Candy Crush....

    So:
    5 lives max
    IAP to increase max to 10 lives
    lives refresh over time
    IAP for powerups


    Extra's:
    2 currencies: 1 hard (NEED to purchase) and 1 'soft' (can be earned in game, but need to play 4+ games to earn enough to pay for powerups for a single game) eg: gold & silver
    Currency changer to change from hard to soft (with horrid exchange rate)

    Also: subscription model IAP which removes adverts and pushes max lives to 10
    SVEN Studios Corp
    WordHero - realtime multiplayer 4x4 grid word game
    Anagram Hero - realtime multiplayer Anagram finding word game
    WordSearch Hero - realtime multiplayer Wordsearch word game
    Math Hero - realtime multiplayer Math game
    Avatar Hero - Create your own Avatar

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  4. #3
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    Pou game has minigames for farming in-game currency.

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  6. #4
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    Quote:
    ----------
    Now I haven't seen this idea used in a game before and I'm wondering if that's because it's against Google Play's Content Policy: Google Play
    It states at the Gambling section:
    Gambling: We don’t allow content or services that facilitate online gambling, including but not limited to, online casinos, sports betting and lotteries, or games of skill that offer prizes of cash or other value.
    ----------

    If it's the same app, generating some resource that is used in another part of the same app should be ok, I would think.
    I think the "games of skill that offer prizes" may be referring to some of those (not discussed that often on this forum) ad networks which offer "gift cards" and credits which can be used to buy real products - I am not recalling the name.

    I suppose creating ANOTHER "game" for user to farm maybe ok - but maybe the same effort could be put into main game to reward in some way (?)


    I think there was a thread on Tapjoy etc. effectiveness (seems around 20% of revenue possible from that) - however probably depends on the game and how integrated etc. ..

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  8. #5
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    If you can't use the lives as to purchase cash or other things with real-world value, then it's fine. But it's pretty atrocious how vague "cash or other value" is. Has tapjoy even made a statement about it's model in relation to the new policies.
    TapContext pays you over time, so it can afford higher cpcs. Click my referral link so I can make money without doing any actual work.

  9. #6
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    @mind @A1ka1inE and others who are designing the monetization of their F2P games, I strongly recommend Ramin's articles (read all of them):

    Gamasutra - Blogs
    Last edited by rottz; 2013-09-04 at 09:48 PM. Reason: added "the monetization"

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  11. #7
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    Thanks. Some of the points here: http://www.gamasutra.com/blogs/Ramin...ion_Tricks.php are beyond evil.
    Last edited by Magnesus; 2013-09-04 at 05:29 PM.

  12. #8
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    @rottz: Thanks!
    @Magnesus: yep... multiple currencies are the way to go!
    SVEN Studios Corp
    WordHero - realtime multiplayer 4x4 grid word game
    Anagram Hero - realtime multiplayer Anagram finding word game
    WordSearch Hero - realtime multiplayer Wordsearch word game
    Math Hero - realtime multiplayer Math game
    Avatar Hero - Create your own Avatar

  13. #9
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    Thanks rottz.


    Quote Originally Posted by Magnesus View Post
    Thanks. Some of the points here: Gamasutra: Ramin Shokrizade's Blog - The Top F2P Monetization Tricks are beyond evil.
    Just reading partially - that is BLUNT - but not surprising given the partial analysis I tried to give about what drives the "whale" monetization model - essentially it IS a resource which is hard for "plebes" to buy and easy for those with money - so they feel extra superior using their cash to do that - i.e. "shortcuts" - as they maybe doing in real life i.e. shortcuts using parents' cash (also notable is that this model has better performance in asian countries - and maybe related to ultra rich parents' children using unlimited credit card payment or children of mafia/corrupt etc.).

    Essentially use of cash is the "cheat" that these folks are offered - and a certain percentage of the population will be ESPECIALLY prone to cheats - and so you have this "symbiosis" between the "whales" who want to pay "take our money" and the game companies who are leveraging it.

    At least that is what I've understood it so far.

    This is also why awarding some currency to users - say as daily rewards - may have benefits (I have yet to have empirical evidence to say that it is my own observation) - but it seems offering Daily Rewards has these benefits:

    - it directs the user's eye to your IAP model
    - it makes the user familiar with your virtual currency and how it works (specifically how it's consumed)
    - offering a Daily Rewards establishes ONE metric of how valuable it is - i.e. it accumulates slowly (in theory this could be offered at an EXTREMELY slow rate within reason). The effect of this would be that it establishes a TIME-VALUE for the IAP - i.e. how much time they would save if they just paid cash (or did a GetJar/Tapjoy type offer - though as I have noted in other threads that since GetJar/Tapjoy type offerwall requires "work" this may turn off the "whale" crowd and maybe a serious limitation of the free "complete offers" model vs. real cash IAP .. ?)

    - it offers some reward for user returning to app - may raise retention rates (which will improve install/uninstall ratios - thus helping rankings, total Active Users as users drain out/attrition at slower rate) - some users will keep your app around thinking they can afford to let it be since can earn some credit next time use it (even if you only pay for max of ONE day's absence)

    - it creates a POSITIVE feeling for the SAME message that would otherwise be boring - if you just put up a splash screen saying you have IAP or do GetJar/Tapjoy it has has ZERO interest value/familiarity to new user UNLESS they are engaged with it (one of the points above) - that engagement (by offering them rewards which is added to their piggy bank) - creates not only a POSITIVE feeling in user towards this "education" (as it only seems to be helping them) - but it is MUCH LESS boring than an explanation of how IAP etc. works - the award of some miniscule Daily Rewards essentially SHOWS how the money is used etc. ..

  14. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magnesus View Post
    Thanks. Some of the points here: Gamasutra: Ramin Shokrizade's Blog - The Top F2P Monetization Tricks are beyond evil.
    Actually, I think this could be a howto manual for my next game
    SVEN Studios Corp
    WordHero - realtime multiplayer 4x4 grid word game
    Anagram Hero - realtime multiplayer Anagram finding word game
    WordSearch Hero - realtime multiplayer Wordsearch word game
    Math Hero - realtime multiplayer Math game
    Avatar Hero - Create your own Avatar

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