It was always the plan when we started building • Glide to run a fair few updates to game this year. This is a breakaway for us when, in all transparency, we usually build a game and once finished, we simply move onto the next one.
After being featured by Apple in 110 countries, we knew that we had a great foundation to build upon, and within a week or so we added a new “Arcade Mode” along with a Remove Ads In App Purchase, which I’m convinced was a huge mistake on launch.
My gut feeling tells me this cost us a few feature spots in the important tier 1 countries, especially in our own back yard here in the UK. In hindsight this is probably one of my biggest mistakes in a long time, and that’s saying something!
But, hey, you live and learn and I never dwell on these things, there’s just no point.
For our next update, I wanted to add some new modes that significantly upped the speed of the game, as whilst the Zen mode was ok, we really wanted to inject a bit of pace 🙂
So, 3 new modes, Blast, Duo & Reverse, each with 20 short levels in each, usually just 1 or 2 actual Buildbox game play scenes.
These are pretty tricky and perfect “bus stop” or “queue” games lasting around 20 seconds each. Hyper Casual to the extreme.
Here’s the Buildbox Mindmap for the new level mode additions. You’ll see the new sections on the left, I’ve re-coloured them to make it stand out more, and the original game on the right, quite a difference!
Updated Buildbox Mindmap
Next on the list was the UI and a fresh new look to reflect the new modes. With 20 levels per mode, and of course the new modes themselves, I wanted to do something a little more that just a new button.
This also lends itself really nicely if/when we want to add some new modes into the game, we can simply bolt these on without any major hassle, something you should always be mindful of when creating your games, this can go along way to save you a huge headache further down the line.
Updated UI Screens
Also on the plan was adding a character trophy room, which was actually built inside one of the very first versions of the game but never made version 1.0 for some reason. This idea came up during one of our weekly Live Q&A sessions discussing one of our members games, and after adding a Quick Win Video Training Lesson on how I built it into the Academy just a few days before, I really liked the idea again, so that’s what I did.
But of course, there’s not much point building a new character store without having anything to put in it, so over the next few days I set about building new Glides. I settled on creating around 20 more, doubling the amount that is currently in the game and these were all created and animated within Photoshop.
New Glides added!
As I mentioned previously, the lack of in app purchases in the game was an issue for me. So it was time to address this further and there’s usually no easier way to add in IAP’s to a game than to lock some of these new characters up, 10 in total, and have them paid.
Character Store/ Trophy Room with In App Purchases
With all this new content being added to the game, we needed to make minor UI tweaks to align everything together so all the world select screens looked the same. This was quite a challenge as the Zen Worlds are completed with a 3 Star system, which is unique to this mode. I think we pulled it off successfully. Often the seemingly simple things like this are the hardest to get right.
New Select Zen Worlds UI Screens
Next up was a fresh new icon, in for a penny in for a pound as they say, so I knocked up a few variations and just as we teach, posted a few of the variations onto our Facebook Page to get some feedback.
A/B Icon Testing on Facebook
It was a really close call between B & C, we actually like them equally, but we’ve opted for “B” and here’s the version we’ve settled on, for now at least!
You can also view the icon as it will look on the Appstore and devices over at our Free Icon Tester Appsparky.com.
We’re pretty happy with how the update is shaping up and we’re all but done for this version. We have a ton of play testing to do and some minor fixes here and there, a ton more polishing also, but it will be great to wrap this version up.
It’s taken a little longer than I’d hoped as we’ve been flat out creating content for the Academy, along with finally finishing off our Epic eBook Appstore Foundation which has delayed both Jilly and I dedicating our full attention on this.
We’ll also be creating 2 new App Previews video’s, making 3 in total, for our Appstore product page listing which is one of the great new features coming to iOS 11 real soon.
This should work really well, especially for this game, as we have multiple worlds to show off. Be sure to consider if any of your games could really benefit from having multiple gameplay video’s. Now Apple has given us the option of adding additional App Preview Videos to our Appstore pages, we should really take advantage and use all these available spots.
I’m also considering changing our screenshots too, but we’ll just concentrate on getting this wrapped up so we can move onto the Android version and potentially seek out a publisher for that.
Watch this space! August has been a very busy month 🙂