UNDERSTANDING GAMERS: 10 PROBLEMS GAMERS FACE

Amazing, isn’t it? There are actually people out there, existing in the real world, that don’t know what MMORPG means. They also haven’t heard of Master Chief, don’t instantly know the weapons cheats for GTA 3 through San Andreas, and haven’t got the foggiest idea why people spend most of their existence holed up in rooms staring at their TVs playing games.

If you’re not a gamer and you’re reading this, you’re likely to be confused by what lies within. If you are a gamer and you’re reading this, you’re bound to find more than a few things that’ll strike a chord with you within. You are the people who truly understand just how these problems affect us all on a daily basis and, for that, we salute you.

  • Doing Crazy Things To Fix Your Hardware/Games

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Rather than do the sensible things when our console/game refuses to work correctly and take it back to somewhere certified to make repairs, we instantly turn to the net to solve our problems.

Whether it’s draping the Xbox 360 in towels to apparently stop it Red Ring of Death’ing, blowing on GameBoy cartridges in the vain hope that they’ll work or something else entirely ludicrous, we’ll try them all in our quest to not be parted with our stuff for any longer than is necessary.

Who else ended up boiling their final disc of Lost Odyssey to get it to work due to the factory printing gunk on the disk? We certainly did.

  • Having A Never-Ending Backlog Of Games

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When you were a kid, life was simple. You went to school, ate some food, then gamed. You had all the time in the world, but you were quite content playing the same game over and over again because you simply didn’t have the money to do otherwise.

Then, quite suddenly, you’re an adult earning money. One game is now never enough; you’ll buy anything, as long as it’s cheap. Steam sales in particular are the most hideously appealing things ever to gamers who simply must buy everything for any amount less or equal to their bank balance.

Of course you won’t have time to actually play any of them, but it’s always nice to know they’re there, just waiting.

  • *Looks At Stat Screen* – 99%

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Ask anyone who’s played Grand Theft Auto III how long they spent looking for hidden packages, and you’ll understand.

Nowdays, with the internet everywhere and wikis and tips flying around with reckless abandon, finding everything you need on a game for 100% is easy-peasy. Back in the day though this wasn’t the case; you were instead stuck with a crappy map from a gaming magazine and had to track down every-single collectible item in the area and – almost certainly – you were guaranteed to miss just ONE and had to go through them all again to find which one it was.

There is no joy greater than the moment you find that last, hidden thing that prevented you from hitting the majestic 100% total.

  • Completely Losing Track Of Time

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You’re pretty sure you’ve only been gaming for about half an hour but once you’ve finally tear yourself away from the screen you’ve found that the world has been taken over by giant ants and the apocalypse has come.

Ok, maybe not that bad, but it’s so easy as a gamer to find yourself missing out on so much of the day as time simply seems to vanish before your very eyes when you come out of a gaming spell.

People have lost entire chunks of their lives playing RPGs – you can completely skip over an entire decade thanks to Wacraft and Skyrim combined.

  • Just Straight Up Staring At Your Games Collection, With Nothing To Play

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Your gaming collection, once a humble pile of discs scattered merrily to the winds of your house, has now grown to gargantuan size. Spending sprees, discounts and the collector in you have all combined together to make you purchase every single game known to man, giving you almost infinite choice about what to play.

Despite this, you’ll often find yourself literally sitting and staring at your gaming collection, wanting to play absolutely none of it. You may pick up a case in triumph, remember you can recall everything that happened on it, then pop it back on the shelf and the whole process starts again.

If only we erase our memories and start everything all over again.

  • How Changing The Disc Is A Thing

Come on, hands up. Which of you have all wished at some point that the big gaming console makers had removed all of the social sharing functions, motion control nonsense and invented something that’ll change our discs for us?

While you can do practically everything on a console from the comfort of your sofa or favourite squash gaming chair, you still, in the modern world no less, have to get off your backside to actually change the disc.

About 60% of the time this requires far too much effort and we’ll quite happily refuse to do so and keep playing whatever’s in just because of utter, sheer laziness.

  • Needing Every Collector’s Edition For No Real Reason

Those wily marketers. Not content with snatching away a fortune’s worth of our money already for just a game, they’ve now invented an even more expensive money-sink, the Collector’s Edition!

Of course we know that it’s just a collection of random stuff chucked in a box that somehow costs far more than usual, but that doesn’t mean we don’t want it!

Collector’s Editions are both causing a problem on our bank balances and rapidly causing us to run out of space to put the damn things. The boxes don’t usually fit in storage areas either, which is just plain inconsiderate.

  • “Just…One…More….Level”

You will go to bed after this one. Seriously, you will. You know you have to get up at Ridiculous O’clock in the morning. You’ll just finish up doing this bit, hit a nice point to stop and then go to bed. Yep. Totally will.

Before you know it, it’s now six in the morning and you’ve completely missed your chance to get any sleep whatsoever. It’s not your fault – after the bit you did there was another bit that was really exciting and gave you new things to play around with.

Then there was another bit after that…aaand another after that. If only games weren’t so damn fun!

  • Redoing A Custom Character JUST Before Completion

It’s a beautiful thing, choice. Many games now are all about choice, giving you the ability to mold your own adventure through the quests, events and even your own character’s appearance.

The latter of these is a huge task that requires much preparation and thought. You’ll more than likely spend hours wrestling with the bizarre faces the games’ system generates, constantly clicking the Random button in the hope that the next face won’t look like a cross between Colonel Gaddafi and a pile of sludge.

When you’re finally finished you can jump into the game, to which you’ll probably never see your characters face again for the next hundred hours, making the task utterly and totally pointless – yet utterly necessary dammit.

  • That Feeling When A Game Locks Up And You Can’t Remember Where You Saved

Throwing caution to the wind like a true rebel, you’ve literally spent the last four hours of a game not saving once.

Almost as if karma was serving up an extra-special dollop of humble pie, your game will, almost without a doubt, decide to completely freeze on you and force you to hit reset and lose all of your progress.

You will then not play on said game for weeks in retaliation.

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Augmented Reality VS Virtual Reality: The Real Battle

Although virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) have existed in some form for decades, only recently have they garnered mainstream attention.

VR is blowing up right now, and its content and hardware advances have been exciting to watch.

In a short amount of time, content creators have made some mind-blowing advances in storytelling with this new technology. Brands, movie studios, gaming companies and news organizations are all tinkering with this tool and channel.

VR will gain ascendancy throughout 2016, but my money’s on AR becoming the dominant technology in our daily lives.

VR is for content

The New York Times recently distributed more than one million Google cardboards to its digital-edition subscribers. YouTube and Facebook are enabling VR online through digital video players. Everything is aligning to have VR hit critical mass next year.

VR is the only medium that guarantees the user’s complete focus on the content. There is no looking away, no checking email or text messages and no updating social-media statuses. VR is the most immersive way to tell a story because what happens inside that headset makes you feel something in your head, heart and gut.

But VR’s biggest strength is also its greatest weakness. The immersive nature of VRhinders users from interacting with their surroundings. It takes them out of the moment. They can’t walk around and see what is right next to them, look people in the eye or read someone’s body language. VR is a powerful way to experience content, but is not practical for interacting in the real world.

VR and AR tinker with our reality — but AR enhances it, while VR diverts us from it.

And therein lies the major problem with VR. Content is king, no doubt, and providing immersive experiences is the holy grail in advertising. But VRwill never become an innocuous part of our daily lives.

The real goal of advertising is not to interrupt our tasks or experiences but to add value to them on behalf of a brand. VR has already started to revolutionize the way we watch content, but will never be the technology we turn to in our everyday lives.

AR is for the real world

AR adds contextual layers of information to our experiences in real time. We have seen this future foretold in Hollywood films, such as Avatar, Minority Report, Iron Man and Wall-E, among others. Soon these depictions will become real.

However, AR has issues with execution, which tends to feel gimmicky. Remember pointing your smartphone to a print ad to get some poorly made content? Google Glass showed some innovative AR applications, but they were ultimately a failure because the hardware and technology were too broad and lacked focus on the consumer problem they were trying to solve. These examples have shown the promise of AR, but have failed to deliver on contextual utility.

Still, the future is bright for AR with several tech companies working on their AR offerings. Microsoft is working on HoloLens AR headset glasses. Developer kits are scheduled to hit the market in early 2016. Google invested in a company called Magic Leap, whose technology beams lasers into the viewer’s iris to activate AR. That future will become a reality in another year’s time.

Both VR and AR tinker with our reality — but AR enhances it, while VR diverts us from it, which is why the latter will come to the fore in 2017, with its promise of contextual data for marketers and utility for consumers.

It’s the future we were promised, and it’s closer to our grasp.

How to develop a great mobile game?

In a time when 6 year olds are getting competitive over the trivial game of Clash of Slash and Boom Beach, it is needless to say that mobile gaming could be the next big thing. And with curious developers and young minds rushing to try their luck at this ew arena, here are a few tricks that we have learned through our years of experience.

  • Know your audience

One of the first steps of many beginnings is to understand who exactly you’re targeting with your game. Are you aiming to entice the pre-school audience or your game is something that any everyday office goer would play? Not just the age, there are various parameters on which you can divide your audience such as, gender, education, language, culture, region and many more. Knowing your audience will help you understand their needs in a better way and thus develop a game that closely caters to the demand. When mixed with your creative streak and the understanding of who to focus, it won’t be a tough job to strike the bulls eye!

  • Develop a UI that even a 5 year old would easily understand

As a developer and an ardent mobile game player,  we have clearly understood that the ’skip’ button at the start of the game is the most sought-after one. A mobile game, we believe, shouldn’t be tough to understanding and the best way to achieve it by removing the buttons on screen. A cluttered mobile screen only makes the user confused thus leading them to quit the game and eventually, uninstall it.

  • Round it up with a unique hook.

Every game that has made it big in the play store has a catch. It could be the most simple thing turned around in a way that it interests everyone. And we have a myriad of examples to prove that. For starters, you remember Flappy Bird, a game that swiped the entire mobile gaming arena, but while you were trying to make that bird cross though those hurdles, ever thought that the basic idea behind the game is actually very simple. It is said that the developer took only two to three days to create and develop the game. Give ‘Candy Crush’, the same thought. Negative or positive, merely talking about the game is clear proof that the game has made an impact on you.

  • Don’t be afraid to experiment

Well, you learn from experience and this is one big lesson that we have learned. Never stop yourself or your team from trying out new technology.  You never know what might strike an interest in the audience and take you a step forward to your big break.

The Google Cardboard was just a few months old when we started working on our VR title for the Play Store. While doing what everyone had been doing, we decided to set away from the clan and develop a virtual reality game. Even before stepping into a completely new arena of mobile gaming, we knew we were going to have a tough time with our first virtual reality title but it didn’t take us more than a few months to release one oft the first mobile games in virtual reality. And there has been no looking back since then. Unbelievably, he game has been getting a lot of attention and we could’t be more proud.

Give it try and let us know how would you rate it:

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.supermonkeyfun.vrsilenthome&hl=en

  • Keep a track of your KPIs

It is extremely important to know what makes the audience click on that ‘download’ button and keep coming back to play the game over and over again. Many a times, a great game looses out on the audience as it fails to identify the KPIs. There will be times when a game has to changed in a ways to take complete advantage of the KPIs. As they say, it is best to strike while the iron is hot.

  • Honour your users’ feedback

The audience is god. They make us what we are and accept it or not, if the audience doesn’t like something then it is best if it is changed. It is important that you value each and every feedback that you get about your game, well, not exactly each and every. Though it is difficult to develop a game which is perfect in everyone’s eyes, valuing customer feedback and making updates according to that, takes us a step further in the effort.

One last tip, the store is brimming with games that are easy to understand but difficult to master. So whatever you decide on developing, keep it simple and good luck!