Back in the 1980’s and 1990’s the gaming industry was dominated by hobbyists, this industry has transformed over the years becoming one of the fastest growing industries. It’s estimated that in 2016 average mobile gaming revenue was 12.6 billion, now what is really surprising is a report by “SWRVE” stating that 0.15% of mobile game players account for 50% revenue. Well what this means is that this multi-billion companies will spend a considerable amount of time and resources to retain their customers. So how do this games keep you coming back to play?
1. Addiction to the brain: When playing mobile games our brain produces dopamine, this chemical in our brains affects our sensation of pleasure and emotions. Using the brain’s reward system, the brain is flooded with dopamine ensuring the player is always happy playing. Over time the brain gets used to excess dopamine in its system and when its not enough the player has a craving. This creates an addiction problem as the player can only get to produce this by playing the game. Games such as Word Cookies keep you playing for hours by making you think that you are making progress step by step, until it makes you feel awesome, then increases the difficulty, driving you crazy. This game is so awesome that websites such as wordcookieanswer.com
have been created for people to easily find answers.This is a nice trick to the brain that the games use and one that the player will never know about unless diagnosed with a problem.
2. Never ending: The most successful mobile games are designed without a certain goal, they lack an ultimate point. Although player do not realize this, they are caught in a pointless adventure, one which they will always look forward to get to “Game over” or “You won” but never get this gratification.
3. They are social: Mobile games are designed with features to ensure they are social, this could be by being multiplayer games. Players from different corners of the globe can challenge each other to know the better of the other. Another social feature is the ability to share your scores or achievements on social media, this drives players to complete challenging levels, and it can only get harder with each level up. This keeps the player wrapped up in the game.
4. Regular updates: As it’s well notable that retaining players for the mobile gaming companies is highly rewarding. They hence ensure they regularly release updates and extra packages to their games. This drives players to try out this new features, trying to stay ahead of their friends and other game enthusiasts.
5. They start off free: Now this is more of a technical statement, most games will start off free but will ask for little fees e.g for add on features, upgrades, trials and removing ad’s. The mobile game companies ensure the game is free and when the player is hooked, they can easily pay for some small charges. In the small charges is another tangled trick again, when the player spends a few dollars on the game then comes a need to get their money’s worth by playing even more.
6. Generate emotions: Mobile game developers will create experiences in games such as war, love and betrayal. Players will develop strong emotions from this games and the intensity of emotions displayed online can resemble the real world emotion.