Mobile game project: Hacker Dungeon

In this post, I will share the last project we are working on. We are committed from the very beginning and sincerely believe in the success of this project. Starting from the needs, through ethnographic research and building a real roadmap without unnecessary fountains – all this will translate into the success of this project, but one by one

Game Introduction

Game Type: Build & Play, 2D Platform

Short description: You run, you avoid obstacles and monsters. After you complete each level, you can edit them. You can also create maps from scratch. You can publish the maps you have created under the link and share with your friends.

Player: 8 -12 years
Similar games: Super Mario Builder, Minecraft, Portal
Platform: Web browser, RWD

Player needs

The genesis of the game comes from observing the behavior of young players. How to approach gameplay and creative mode. On the one hand, we have an amazing desire to create and build. On the other hand, the need for constant stimuli makes the young “builder” bored after a few or a dozen or so minutes. It records its progress, but does not come back to it. He prefers to start from scratch because he has a new idea and a new approach.

At the same time, the player wants to share the effect of his work and wants someone to move in the world created by him. I expect feedback and feedback. He also wants to modify the designs of others himself. Modifications should also be simple and intuitive. There is no time for an advanced project.

Game background

The player needs a simple and intuitive game. That is why we decided to reach for proven solutions. Retrogaming is doing very well. The latest productions of Minecraft or Roblox show that engaging and simple gameplay is much more important than polished graphics.

Considering the above – the 2d platform “run to the right” seems to be the most optimal solution. A very simple gameplay. Intuitive first dive. The length of the level will be optimized so that it can be completed in 2-3 minutes. In the next few minutes you will be able to edit the level and play it again. And more importantly – send it to a friend.

MVP Games and Technologies

Considering the above, a mobile application seems to be a natural solution. However, the entry threshold for mobile applications is very high. Both for the game developer and the player. Therefore, we focused on the player’s needs and it turns out that we do not need a mobile application to meet them. After much thought, we don’t even need to create an account.

Focusing on the basic needs of the player, a simple browser game emerges. Of course, it must be very well adapted to the mobile views. But it’s still a browser game. Thus, the entry threshold for players is practically zero. The threshold for inviting friends, sharing the result of your creation, and playing friends maps. Mutual improvement of ideas. Nothing else is needed.

Of course, in the future, we anticipate accounts, rankings, and a more extensive range of map components. But this is the future. The key now is to meet the basic needs of the player. Everything else takes a back seat.

UX mobile game challenges

We know the needs of players, we have the background and selected technologies. We also have defined MVPs. The most important element of this puzzle turned out to be the interface. Research in the case of play mode has shown that we are able to build an understandable interface without any problems. In the case of the build mode, it wasn’t that easy.

Limitations of mobile screens, as well as player behavior patterns, and gameplay flexibility…. Reconciling it was not easy. Information architecture and transparency on mobile screens is crucial. There is also no place for extensive tutorials. Anyway, we’re talking about a game in which the average player will spend a few minutes, so any tutorials were out of the question. After a few iterations and mockup tests, a two-level drag & drop interface was born.

UX for mobile game -summary

Creating a game for young players is a challenge. Workshops, needs research and tests with them – it’s pure pleasure. The honesty with which a 10-year-old tells you that your idea sucks and that you need to improve it because he doesn’t understand it – that’s something that is missing when designing solutions for older players. At the same time, there is nothing more enjoyable than the flash of a child talking about a map he made up himself. A map in your not yet released game.