Top 85 Hyper Casual Games

The Top 85 Hyper Casual Games of 2019

Hyper Casual Games Video

Here’s our ultimate list of the very best hyper casual games of 2019.

85 of the biggest, most downloaded mobile games from the App store and Google Play.

These are the games we played in 2019 on our weekly Live streams inside the Academy, yup, every single one!

The age of Hyper casual games is most definitely here to stay and continues to reign supreme across the App Store and the GooglePlay store.

Whilst many of the games you’ll see in our Best Hyper-Casual List, many of which have reached at least top 20 in the App Store charts, may appear super simple on the surface and when playing, many have complex data driven code under the bonnet.

These games have not been published by the biggest mobile hyper casual games publishers in the world by chance. They have been rigorously tweaked and tested for high performance and maximised for monetisation.

Each week inside the Academy we host our weekly game dev show where we put these games through their paces and figure out what ingredients goes into making these hit games. This is a fantastic way to come up with your own hyper casual games ideas, keep up with casual gaming trends and innovative game mechanics.

Our members love these weekly livestreams and find them super powerful where we dissect hyper casual games software, companies and research retention, KPI’s and what makes low CPI.

So here it is, here’s our list of the Top Hyper Casual Games in 2019.

Don’t forget, you can join us too by simply clicking here to become an Academy Member.

Our Top 85 Hyper Casual Games of 2019

5 Hoops – Voodoo   

Shoot hoops and race millions of other players all around the globe. Unlock exciting new locations, unique costumes and cool balls…

Download 5 Hoops on the Apple Appstore

Download 5 Hoops From The Google Play Store

aquapark.io - Voodoo

Aquapark.io – Voodoo   

Reach to the end of the water slide, try to be the first. Bump other players during the race and have fun playing this colorful and sunny water slide game….

Download aquapark.io on the Apple Appstore

Download aquapark.io From The Google Play Store

Art Ball 3D - Alictus

Art Ball 3D – Alictus 

Move your finger on screen to move your ball and glue color spheres around you. Dispatch your colors to paint beautiful artistic paintings on the canvas…

Download Art Ball 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Art Ball 3D From The Google Play Store

Ball Action - PONOS

Ball Action – PONOS

Roll around and knock other balls off! Make sure not to fall off yourself… Can you do it?…

Download Ball Action on the Apple Appstore

Download Ball Action From The Google Play Store

Slo Mo Boy - App Advisory

Slo Mo Boy – App Advisory

TAP the screen to jump through the Shapes and to reach the Goal. How far will you go?…

Download Slo Mo Boy on the Apple Appstore

Perfect Slices - SayGames LLC

Perfect Slices – SayGames LLC

Chop like a real master. It’s so satisfying!…

Download Perfect Slices on the Apple Appstore

Download Perfect Slices From The Google Play Store

Untangled 3D - Kwalee

Untangled 3D – Kwalee

Enjoy the satisfaction of untangling all sorts of different objects to add them to your collection and smash them at the end…

Download Untangled on the Apple Appstore

Rusty Blower 3D - ZPLAY

Rusty Blower 3D – ZPLAY

Rotate the objects and watch the rusty come off. Many new objects for you to blow and enjoy…

Download Rusty Blower 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Rusty Blower 3D From The Google Play Store

Line Color 3D - Tastypill

Line Color 3D – Tastypill

Tap and hold to paint the road. Can you paint all the way to finish line?…

Download Line Color 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Line Color 3D From The Google Play Store

Origame - Ketchapp

Origame – Ketchapp

Fold your paper…Do it once again…and BOOM! You got a penguin! Master the art of Origami and complete as many levels as possible!…

Download Origame on the Apple Appstore

Download Origame From The Google Play Store

Stop them ALL! - Dual Cat

Stop them All! – Dual Cat

Use traps at the right time to Stop Them ALL ! Unlock all traps for more fun…

Download Stop them ALL! on the Apple Appstore

Download Stop them ALL! From The Google Play Store

Dig Dog! - Homa Games

Dig Dog! – Homa Games

“The most addictive Dog game ever! In this game, you must find bones using your dog’s sense of smell. Collect more bones than your opponents to win…

Download Dig Dog! on the Apple Appstore

Download Dig Dog! From The Google Play Store

Fun Strike 3D - Enrich Teknoloji Yazilim A.S

Fun Strike 3D – Enrich Teknoloji Yazilim A.S.

Shift the ball up and down to avoid from all obstacles. Make sure to shape the ball correctly! Avoid from all obstacles and complete all levels…

Download Fun Strike 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Fun Strike 3D From The Google Play Store

Human Runner 3D - Denis Holub

Human Runner 3D – Denis Holub

Human Runner 3D is a casual obstacle course simulator. Expect a new kind of experience, simple controls and lots of falls…

Download Human Runner 3D on the Apple Appstore

Color Balls 3D - Good Job Games

Color Balls 3D – Good Job Games

Your main goal is to fill the basket with the amount of Balls you’re given. The challenge is to figure out how…

Download Color Balls 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Color Balls 3D From The Google Play Store

Train Taxi - SayGames LLC

Train Taxi – SayGames LLC

Collect all the people to complete a level. The more passengers you have, the longer the train gets! Be aware of your tail, avoid the crash!…

Download Train Taxi on the Apple Appstore

Download Train Taxi From The Google Play Store

Find the Floor - Carlton Forrester

Find the Floor – Carlton Forrester

Roll the ball to fill in the floor – but don’t fall off!…

Download Fine the Floor on the Apple Appstore

Pressure Washer - Squeaky Clean - Lion Studios

Pressure Washer: Squeaky Clean – Lion Studios

Clean up the mess to feel total satisfaction! Wash down hundreds of dirty objects to reveal their sparkling nature…

Download Pressure Washer: Squeaky Clean on the Apple Appstore

Download Pressure Washer: Squeaky Clean From The Google Play Store

Flick Swing - Babil Studios

Flick Swing – Babil Studios

All the fun & joy of air hockey is now available on mobile! Feel the air breeze on your hands while playing Flick Swing!

Download Flick Swing on the Apple Appstore

Roller Smash - Voodoo

Roller Smash – Voodoo

Clear the level by rolling over everything! Avoid the bad stuff and collect all the cubes! Play like a wrecking ball magnet…

Download Roller Smash on the Apple Appstore

Download Roller Smash From The Google Play Store

Bike Rush - Ketchapp

Bike Rush – Ketchapp

Ready, steady, go! Compete in a massive high speed bike race. Move left and right to avoid obstacles and collect coins…

Download Bike Rush on the Apple Appstore

Download Bike Rush From The Google Play Store

Picker 3D - Rollic Games

Picker 3D – Rollic Games

 Drag Picker to right or left Collect everything and open gates. Reach high scores to unlock powerups, skins and themes…

Download Picker 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Picker 3D From The Google Play Store

Turbo Stars - SayGames LLC

Turbo Stars – SayGames LLC

Race and compete with other opponents in awesome tracks with different obstacles and ramps. Be the best of the best and beat the rest!…

Download Turbo Stars on the Apple Appstore

Download Turbo Stars From The Google Play Store

Pokey Ball - Voodoo

Pokey Ball – Voodoo

Try to poke and flick your ball as high as you can. How high can you go?…

Download Pokey Ball on the Apple Appstore

Download Pokey Ball From The Google Play Store

Baseball Fury - Eugene Volos

Baseball Fury – Eugene Volos

Exciting baseball-like adventure on the island and hit all approaching objects. One-finger easy-to-learn controls, rich visual effects, and addictive gameplay…

Download Baseball Fury on the Apple Appstore

Download Baseball Fury From The Google Play Store

Combine It! - Homa Games

Combine It! – Homa Games

Can you make the right figure to fit the blocks? Enjoy bonus levels with awesome animations – turn those grey blocks into bright and shining colors…

Download Combine It! on the Apple Appstore

Download Combine It! From The Google Play Store

Touch the wall - Voodoo

Touch the Wall – Voodoo

Be sneaky and try to touch the wall before the other players without being seen by the red light!…

Download Touch the Wall on the Apple Appstore

Download Touch the Wall From The Google Play Store

Dig This! - Raketspel AB

Dig This! – Raketspel AB

Just dig with your fingers — and guide the ball to the cup. Take advantage of the objects’ speed, make objects collide, use your intuitive thinking…

Download Dig This! on the Apple Appstore

Download Dig This! From The Google Play Store

Flick Pool Star - Mindstorm Studios

Flick pool Star – Mindstorm Studios

Clear the table and become a Pool Star! Solve challenging puzzles and unlock multiple tables! Super addictive with simple controls…

Download Flick Pool Star on the Apple Appstore

i Peel Good - Lion Studios

i Peel Good – Lion Studios

How smooth are you? WILD ADDICTING. Offline Mode. Oddly Satisfying…

Download i Peel Good on the Apple Appstore

Download i Peel Good From The Google Play Store

Jetpack Jump - Kwalee

Jetpack Jump – Kwalee

Fly high in Jetpack Jump to reach new places waiting to be discovered! Soar into the sky, make sure you use all your jetpack fuel to go the distance…

Download Jetpack Jump on the Apple Appstore

Download Jetpack Jump From The Google Play Store

Made Possible - Voodoo

Made Possible – Voodoo

The impossible? Made possible. Make your way through a series of cool 3D visual puzzles and create mind-bending impossible objects along the way…

Download Made Possible on the Apple Appstore

OnPipe - SayGames LLC

OnPipe – SayGames LLC

Slicing soap, flakes, grass has never been so satisfying and breathtaking . Enjoy the destruction! Hold to slice things, watch out for the obstacles!…

Download OnPipe on the Apple Appstore

Download OnPipe From The Google Play Store

roadcrash.io - Lucky Kat Studios

roadcrash.io – Lucky Kat Studios

Crash all the cars on your way to the finish line! Bump them off the road and merge cars in your garage to unlock even more powerful ones!…

Download roadcrash.io on the Apple Appstore

Download roadcrash.io From The Google Play Store

Shape Shifter 3D - Voodoo

Shape Shifter 3D – Voodoo

Shift your shape to avoid obstacles and try to beat all the levels !…

Download Shape Shifter 3D on the Apple Appstore

Drop & Smash - Kwalee

Drop & Smash – Kwalee

Drop & Smash is a game where you drop items onto objects below in order to break them. Upgrade your height and power to inflict more damage…

Download Drop & Smash on the Apple Appstore

Download Drop & Smash From The Google Play Store

Colored Tunnel - Vladislavs Sirjevs

Colored Tunnel – Vladislavs Sirjevs

Roll your way through the color tunnel. Hit ONLY blocks that are the same color as you. Watch out – you switch colors in the blink of an eye…

Download Colored Tunnel on the Apple Appstore

Stickman Riders - MADBOX

Stickman Riders – MADBOX

Ready, steady, go ! Get coins to go faster. Take the boost pad to jump higher. Be first to win special races and achieve new skins !…

Download Stickman Riders on the Apple Appstore

Download Stickman Riders From The Google Play Store

Icing on the Cake - Lion Studios

Icing on the Cake – Lion Studios

From the makers of I Peel Good, Icing on the Cake is your next obsession. Test your cake decorating skills! Easy to play, but don’t miss a spot…

Download Icing on the Cake on the Apple Appstore

Download Icing on the Cake From The Google Play Store

Slippery Slides - Crazy Labs

Slippery Slides – Crazy Labs

The race is on, and it’s a slippery slope! You know how they say nice guys finish last? Well, don’t be a nice guy! Start each level last and finish 1st!…

Download Slippery Slides on the Apple Appstore

Download Slippery Slides From The Google Play Store

Rolling Domino - Lion Studios

Rolling Domino – Lion Studios

Aim at one domino and shoot it to strike all down! Challenge different levels and see what surprise are waiting for you after the dominos fall…

Download Rolling Domino on the Apple Appstore

Download Rolling Domino From The Google Play Store

Army Clash - Voodoo

Army Clash – Voodoo

Create the perfect formation, increase your army, and tap at the right strategic time to win against all your opponents. You will be the winner…

Download Army Clash on the Apple Appstore

Download Army Clash From The Google Play Store

Commuters! - Voodoo

Commuters! – Voodoo

Push your bus to the limit! Fill but don’t explode! Live the best traveling experience!…

Download Commuters! on the Apple Appstore

Download Commuters! From The Google Play Store

Runway Rider! - Appsolute Games LLC

Runway Rider! – Appsolute Games LLC

Move your runway side to side to land your planes, but be quick before your planes land in the sea or the enemy missiles and bombs destroy your runway!…

Runway Rider! on the Apple Appstore

Sandwich! - Popcore GmbH

Sandwich! – Popcore GmbH

It’s your job to combine bread with lettuce, tomato, salmon, cheese, onion, and many more toppings. Unlock ingredients as the levels get harder!…

Download Sandwich! on the Apple Appstore

Download Sandwich! From The Google Play Store

The Real juggle - Lion Studios

The Real Juggle – Lion Studios

Put your juggling skills to the test! Freestyle and channel your inner pro in The Real Juggle. How long can you keep the ball in the air?…

Download The Real Juggle on the Apple Appstore

Download The Real Juggle From The Google Play Store

Color Hole 3D - Good Job Games

Color Hole 3D – Good Job Games

Once again, your newest addiction comes in 3D! Clear the board & do not pull other Colors in, that is it!…

Download Color Hole 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Color Hole 3D From The Google Play Store

Path Painter - Voodoo

Path Painter – Voodoo

Complete each level by painting all the paths. Tap to make each person run. Be careful, don’t let the people collide!…

Download Path Painter on the Apple Appstore

Download Path Painter From The Google Play Store

Crazy Climber! - MOONEE PUBLISHING LTD

Crazy Climber! – MOONEE PUBLISHING 

Set off on a new climbing adventure. Climb the worlds most dangerous cliffs, race against others. Win bonus levels and be the best climber…

Download Crazy Climber! on the Apple Appstore

Download Crazy Climber! From The Google Play Store

Soccer Pinball Pro - Sebastian Barrotta

Soccer Pinball Pro – Sebastian Barrotta

Soccer Pinball: an electrifying blend of two classic games! Take your shot at becoming the MVP you were destined to be in Exhibition or Season Mode…

Download Soccer Pinball Pro on the Apple Appstore

Uphill Run - Voodoo

Uphill Run – Voodoo

Race to the top of the hill to become the KING and shoot balls at other players. Be the king of the hill longest to win this fun multiplayer game…

Download Uphill Run on the Apple Appstore

Collect Cubes - Alictus

Collect Cubes – Alictus

Move around and knock over 3D cube buildings. Bring all pieces to your core to level up…

Download Collect Cubes on the Apple Appstore

Download Collect Cubes From The Google Play Store

Get in Shape - Ketchapp

Get in Shape – Ketchapp

Pass through all the different shapes in order to go as far as possible and beat your friends. The further you go, the harder the challenge!…

Download Get in Shape on the Apple Appstore

Download Get in Shape From The Google Play Store

Zipline 3D - Voodoo

Zipline 3D – Voodoo

Race your way through the skies in this epic zip line racing experience. Catch the boosts and perform awesome tricks in the air if you want to finish first!…

Download Zipline 3D on the Apple Appstore

Fun Race 3D - Good Job Games

Fun Race 3D – Good Job Games

From folks who brought you Run Race 3D.
 Full parkour experience with tons of unique levels. Race with others, achieve levels, unlock new characters…

Download Fun Race 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Fun Race 3D From The Google Play Store

Cannon Shot! - SayGames LLC

Cannon Shot! – SayGames LLC

Fill all the buckets with balls to complete a level. Use your finger to move various objects to change the direction of the balls you shoot. Aim smart!…

Download Cannon Shot! on the Apple Appstore

Download Cannon Shot! From The Google Play Store

Cleon - Warrior Fall - Gismart

Cleon – Warrior Fall – Gismart

This is Cleon, and it’s down to you to smash your way through monsters, demons, in an epic adventure that pits the player against the underworld…

Download Cleon - Warrior Fall on the Apple Appstore

Download Cleon - Warrior Fall From The Google Play Store

Flip Dunk - Voodoo

Flip Dunk – Voodoo

Tap to jump and then hold your finger while in the air to flip…

Download Flip Dunk on the Apple Appstore

Download Flip Dunk From The Google Play Store

Jelly Shift - SayGames LLC

Jelly Shift – SayGames LLC

Shift the jelly up and down to change its form. Make sure to shape the jelly correctly so it can fit through the obstacles. Be the first to beat all levels…

Download Jelly Shift on the Apple Appstore

Download Jelly Shift From The Google Play Store

Leaf Blower 3D - Voodoo

Leaf Blower 3D – Voodoo

Clearing away leaves has never been so satisfying. With simple one touch control Leaf Blower 3D has brought the satisfaction right to your fingertips…

Download Leaf Blower 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Leaf Blower 3D From The Google Play Store

Downhill Chill - Raketspel AB

Downhill Chill – Raketspel

Experience the thrill of ski racing downhill at a dangerously high speed. Make flips, upgrade your racer and knock down the competition to finish ahead!…

Download Downhill Chill on the Apple Appstore

Forge Ahead - Be a Blacksmith - Lion Studios

Forge Ahead – Be a Blacksmith – Lion Studios

Strap on your boots and forge ahead! Mine metals, hammer them into shape, and forge the best swords you can!…

Download Forge Ahead - Be a Blacksmith on the Apple Appstore

Download Forge Ahead - Be a Blacksmith From The Google Play Store

Happy Hockey! - Gismart

Happy Hockey! – Gismart

Hockey-based action puzzler that’s all radical and totally free to play. Grab your stick and hit the ice, this is the sports game you’ve been waiting for!…

Download Happy Hockey! on the Apple Appstore

Download Happy Hockey! From The Google Play Store

Zombie Royale - Ketchapp

Zombie Royale – Ketchapp

Journey through the zombie apocalypse, choose from an insane arsenal of powerful weapons and do whatever you want!…

Download Zombie Royale on the Apple Appstore

Download Zombie Royale From The Google Play Store

Traffic Turn - Voodoo

Traffic Turn – Voodoo

Tap and guide queued vehicles into the highway traffic, incoming vehicles won’t wait for you. Get extra points for inserting multiple cars in a row…

Download Traffic Turn on the Apple Appstore

Stencil Art - Spray Masters - Lion Studios

Stencil Art – Spray Masters – Lion Studios

Come unlock your hidden painting skills. Become a master artist. Just play and spray!…

Download Stencil Art - Spray Masters on the Apple Appstore

Download Stencil Art - Spray Masters From The Google Play Store

Color Fill 3D - Good Job Games

Color Fill 3D – Good Job Games

Once you start, you will never stop playing. Just one objective: Fill the board. Play by swiping your finger, avoid obstacles, cover all of the board to win…

Download Color Fill 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Color Fill 3D From The Google Play Store

Bouncy Hills - Ketchapp

Bouncy Hills – Ketchapp

Thrills and spills, epic wins, fails and tricks in endless Bouncy Hills assault courses to compete with your friends and gain records…

Download Bouncy Hills on the Apple Appstore

Download Bouncy Hills From The Google Play Store

Domidle - Dmytro Sokhan

Domidle – Dymtro Sokhan

Drop domino lines and become rich. Earn money and open new exiting levels…

Download Domidle on the Apple Appstore

Off the Rails - Kwalee

Off the Rails 3D – Kwalee

It’s all about the timing! Make sure you conserve your fuel when going down hill and watch your speed so that you don’t go flying off the track…

Download Off the Rails on the Apple Appstore

Download Off the Rails From The Google Play Store

Blockbuster! - Voodoo

Blocksbuster! – Voodoo

Destroy complex block buildings by swallowing them with the hole. Be careful not to catch the bomb! Easy-to-learn controls and addictive gameplay flow…

Download Blocksbuster! on the Apple Appstore

Download Blocksbuster! From The Google Play Store

Split Balls 3D - Homa Games

Split Balls 3D – Homa Games

Do you think you can collect all the balls for each level and beat the record? Finish all the levels, unlock new balls and different colors…

Download Split Balls 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Split Balls 3D From The Google Play Store

Basket Race 3D - MADBOX

Basket Race 3D – MADBOX

Suit up and get ready for the funniest basketball race ever! Score as fast as possible to advance and be the first to finish the race!…

Download Basket Race 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Basket Race 3D From The Google Play Store

Sticky Block - Voodoo

Sticky Block – Voodoo

Stick blocks on your block and make your block bigger. Good shape and size of block will be help for winning the level…

Download Sticky Block on the Apple Appstore

Download Sticky Block From The Google Play Store

Battle Disc - SayGames LLC

Battle Disc – SayGames LLC

Throw the disc and eliminate your opponents defences. But be carefull…if he catches the disc, he will throw it back…

Download Battle Disc on the Apple Appstore

Download Battle Disc From The Google Play Store

Crazy Shopping - Kwalee

Crazy Shopping – Kwalee

Crazy Shopping will have you in hysterics! This fun, crazy shopping game uses ragdoll physics to create as much chaos while you shop!…

Download Crazy Shopping on the Apple Appstore

Download Crazy Shopping From The Google Play Store

Spinning Blades - Voodoo

Spinning Blades – Voodoo

Collect blades and use your spin to slay your enemies in this furious sword mayhem! Who will survive in this crazy battle of guts and steel?…

Download Spinning Blades on the Apple Appstore

Big Battle 3D - Kwalee

Big Battle 3D – Kwalee

Big Battle 3D is a fun and addictive game where you build up your army to storm the castles and watch them fight!…

Download Big Battle 3D on the Apple Appstore

Download Big Battle 3D From The Google Play Store

Crazy Kick! - Voodoo

Crazy Kick! – Voodoo

Overtake your opponents, move swiftly and shoot goals! Dribble, pass and kick. Real football experience complete with easy controls…

Download Crazy Kick! on the Apple Appstore

Download Crazy Kick! From The Google Play Store

Sand Balls - SayGames LLC

Sand Balls – SayGames LLC

Make a path for your balls by moving your finger. Avoid and crash obstacles. Get as many balls to finish as you can…

Download Sand Balls on the Apple Appstore

Download Sand Balls From The Google Play Store

Farmers.io - Voodoo

Farmers.io – Voodoo

Enter the field, harvest as much as you can, and steal resources from others farmers in this unique snake farming game…

Download Farmers.io on the Apple Appstore

Download Farmers.io From The Google Play Store

BlackShip Royale - Cube Games

BlackShip Royale – Voodoo

Be a part of the amazing caribbean experience. Thousands of Ship Upgrades and great environment design…

Download BlackShip Royale on the Apple Appstore

Push'em all - Voodoo

Push’em All – Voodoo

Trace your way to the end of the level and push the enemies with your stick on the way! Move your character and make all the enemies fall down…

Download Push'em All on the Apple Appstore

Download Push'em All From The Google Play Store

Updating Glide

Updating Glide – The Full Breakdown

 

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.

Arcade Mode


 

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


Glide Updated Buildbox Mindmap

Blast


Duo 


Reverse


 

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


Glide 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


Glide Updated Character Store

 

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


Glide Updated Zen Worlds

 

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


Glide Updated 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.

 

Glide Updated Version 2 Icon

 

http://www.appsparky.com/?id=cPCkGp

 

Summing Up


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 🙂

Academy Inside Extra!

Access our “Watch Us Build Series” inside the RisingHigh Academy.

Discover how to we went from a blank page to concept, building and launching Glide to be featured by Apple in 110 countries without a publisher. Over 50 hours of video with an action plan for your own successful launch.

Not an Academy Member? Click Here to Learn More

 

 

What is a Game Core Loop

What is a Core Loop in a Mobile Game?

 

So what exactly is meant by the ‘Core Loop’ and why is it so important?

 

The core loop is essentially the very heartbeat of your game. It is a series or chain of actions that is repeated over and over as the primary flow your players experience.

 

So let’s take a city builder as an example. I have to earn coins to craft various items and only once I’ve crafted my items, does my Town grow. I then rinse and repeat this process and my Town becomes a City. I want a City full of nice new buildings, so I complete the loop and I get my reward. It’s the core essence of why we return to play games over and over again.

Let’s take a look at a couple more examples.

Clash of Clans

Now I’m sure you’ve heard of Clash of Clans or played it at some time.

Clash of clans core loop goes like this:

Collect Coins & Elixir :  Build your clan/settlement :  Expand your Troops & battle to win more coins/elixir. This goes around and rinses and repeats, but the aim stays the same, Collect / Build / Expand.

 

Supercell Clash of Clans Core Loop

Of course, there is an absolute ton of other stuff that goes on in within the game, but this is the core loop, the base from which it all works around. A genius game that has thousands of followers all over the world.

Now, clearly, Clash of Clans is a super complicated game under the bonnet, and most casual games don’t come remotely close in terms of complexity, although they hold the same game loop theory.

Stack by Ketchapp

So let’s take a look of what a casual game core could look like, and let’s use Ketchapps Stack as an example.

 

Ketchapp Stack Core Loop

So as you can see, it’s not hugely different from Clash of Clans in essence, slightly more basic of course, but these loops are present in every game you’ll see.

Play /  Earn diamonds /  Replay to earn more coins to unlock new game themes.

 

So why is this important to you?

Your core loop is essentially the very heartbeat of your game. Once you have firmly settled on this core loop, you can start to expand on this and also ensure that your gameplay doesn’t deviate too much from the actual purpose of the game itself.

In short, it’ll keep you in check so the majority of things you add to your game will stay true to this loop. Once you have this solid foundation, you can start to think about your game structure.

So the base to any game will work something like this :

The Actions in your game.

The Rewards the players receive.

Unlock new characters or new level and progress.

Or simply looked at from a players point of view, your core loop will be :

What do I collect/do : What are my rewards : How do I progress?

 

What about the Game Story?

Well, I’m pretty sure many would not clump these 2 fundamentals together in one post, and there’s certainly arguments for not doing so, but as we’re focussing really on casual mobile games, rather than traditional console or PC games, stories are often non-existent. They’re just really not applicable for casual phone games.

When we look at most of the top casual games on the App Stores, a huge majority of them are high score chasers. If they are not high score chasers, then most likely they are level based or stage based, so, for me, the story actually is the core loop itself.

Final Thoughts

Once you understand the core loop and the critical part it plays in the designing of your game, you’ll have a super solid base around which to build your project. If well designed, your core loop will invoke a sense of achievement, engagement and keep your players motivated and challenged with layers of difficulty added as your game progresses.

This is the essence of great game design.

 

How To Get Game Ideas

How to get ideas & inspiration for your Mobile Games

 

How to come up with that great Game idea & the resources that we use to inspire us. Looking at the world around you, using the App Store for inspiration, TV & Films, online resources. This is one of the lessons taken from our Platinum standard foundation course available to all Academy members.

 

  • Looking at the World Around You ( 0.33 )
  • Using the App Store for Inspiration ( 1.53 )
  • Television / Films ( 2.37 )
  • Online Resources ( 3.45 )

Ideas & Prototyping

It can be in the strangest places where game ideas can come from, and every morning Jilly and I will take about an hours walk around the local lake. Although we generally talk about the schedule for that day, many game ideas have come from simply taking ourselves out of the office, and getting out and about.


The World Around You

You’d be surprised at how much you can absorb just by being in a different environment. I recently spoke at Carter Thomas’s Bluecloud Live Event in Amsterdam, and just four days before I was due to leave, Jilly realised my passport was out of date, oops! Thanks Jilly!

So as I made my way to the emergency passport office, I arrived at Westminster, London, by train. The architecture in the underground tube station was incredible and immediately caught my eye, and instantly a game was conceived in my head.

This is just one example of how different environments can spark such an idea.

 

Westminster Tube Station

Westminster Tube Station

As I stood taking in this unfamiliar location, my mind wandered into game mode. I was getting my fair share of strange and funny looks, but I didn’t care, as a game designer, training your brain to see opportunities in the world around you, can be highly beneficial. Looking at the pipe structures, steelwork and cubby holes I could imagine a character running across these, maybe dodging bullets, jumping obstacles and leaping from escalators. Of course this was just a seed of an idea, but an idea none the less. There are literally dozens of these moments that happen every single day, if you choose to identify them.

 


Landscape Vs Portrait

Another great strategy for improving your game ideas is to simply download some of the top Games In the App Store, and draw inspiration from them.

Fatal Landscape & Portrait

What’s a favourite game you’re playing at the moment? Have you ever tried turning the screen on it its side? For instance if it’s landscape game, try turning it to portrait. Just seeing the mechanics in a different way can be enough to spawn something new.Another great strategy for improving your game ideas is to simply download some of the top Games In the App Store, and draw inspiration from them.

Whilst this can be very effective, it’s also incredibly difficult not to simply end up copy an existing game, your job here is to find the mechanic that you can modify and make your own.

By garnering inspiration from other sources first, you can create a hybrid of some of the popular successful games in the App Store, and fuse them together to create something unique and commercially proven.


Matte Paintings

Inspiration can also come from television and especially films. I can’t say how many times I’ve been watching a sci-fi film where just a small subsection of the movie could potentially be turned into a game itself.

Most of the famous blockbusters are usually incredibly high budget projects and are visually Epic experiences. These are designed by world class set designers and production teams, and we can learn a lot by studying these award winning film makers.

Such inspiring moments can manifest themselves literally infinite times and in many different scenarios and spawn new ideas if you train your brain to look for this.

Matte Painting Inspiration

 

Often browsing Google images can also be a quick way to identify classic film moments and iconic scenes. As I was putting this lesson together I did a quick search for Matte Paintings and Concept Art. There are literally 1000’s and here’s just one that caught my eye. It’s a very cool Sci-fi scene of what could be a skyscraper with some people looking out onto a futuristic city.

I took a quick screen grab and overlaid my concept idea directly into photoshop. I think there’s a decent idea here and will definitely work some more on this.


Online Gaming Sites

We also often look at online gaming sites to see if we can touch upon any unique gameplay mechanics, or stumble across games from the past.

Sites like GameJolt.com are often packed with unique game mechanics, and although they’re usually little more than rough demos with poor graphics, you can often find a few gems on there.

itch.io is another similar site dedicated to the indie community but the quality is far superior.

You’ll probably recognise some of the games on here, and the sites popularity and constant evolution, continues to make this a great source of inspiration with regular updates.

Gaming Jam Sites

Game Jam Videos can also reveal some interesting ideas and you can find a ton of these on Youtube. Just type in ‘Game Jams’ into Google and plenty of videos both old and new will appear. These can definitely be worth a watch. It must be said there’s an awful of rubbish in these, but just occasionally, they may spark your imagination and uncover a strange type of gameplay.

In general, there is no particular quick way to surf through these sites, however if you are stuck for ideas I’d recommend spending some research time on these. Every once in awhile we will stumble across something that we can flesh out and start to prototype.

Once we have got that seed of an idea, we usually start sketching, be it in our sketchbooks, or on a white board. Our sketchbooks can also be an awesome resource when ideas are a little thin on the ground.

Browsing old sketches with fresh eyes, or even sometimes looking at rough drawings and scribbles upside down or back to front, can be enough to ignite an idea.


Buildbox

One of the other successful ways for us however, is to just dive straight into Buildbox.com, with maybe just a small idea that we’ve been thinking on.

Many times whilst trying to create a particular function for a game, or by making a character move in a certain way, we’ll do something by mistake, and this can create one of those lucky, happy accidents and take the project in a completely different direction. By having such a fluid and organic development process, prototyping based on one of our existing games can be a great way to form ideas.

Much like ‘writers block’ is a well-known phrase in the world of writing, in terms of game development we refer to this as “blank screen syndrome”. Of course we still have our days like everyone, but using a combination of the techniques above, we have now for the most part eliminated this “blank screen syndrome”.

If you are ever truly stuck and nothing seems to be happening, get your self out and about, go watch a film or even take a shower. Usually some of our best ideas come when you’re not consciously thinking about games at all.


Summary

  • Looking at the world around you and how you can draw ideas from your environment.
  • Using the App Store for Inspiration, by simply playing successful games and thinking about how by just tweaking and twisting the gameplay, you can create something fresh and new.
  • Television & Films, especially of the science fiction and fantasy genre, are huge resources to draw from once you can see through your game makers eyes.
  • How Online Resources such as GameJolt.com, itch.io and Game Jam Videos, often contain weird and wonderful new mechanics, which can be the foundation and starting blocks to your new game.

Action Points

• Get out into the world

Go for an hours walk in an unfamiliar place, ideally a nature spot of some description. Be really present in the environment. Look out for any shapes, patterns, or movement around you.

Some examples could be a reflection in water, or the way the light hits an object. It could be a shape in the trees or clouds, or just like when I was travelling and noticed the architecture around me. Take your phone to capture a picture, or ideally a notepad, to record a quick sketch. It doesn’t matter how badly drawn it is, but by physically jotting these down, it really starts to build your “little treasure book of ideas”.

Watch a Fantasy or Sci-fi Film

If you have a favourite Science Fiction or Fantasy film, then load that up and watch it through your new game makers eyes. Just like when going for your walk, and as you saw in the examples I gave, look out for scenes and moments that are interesting to you. Keep your sketchbook to hand or take a photo of your screen.

• Visit GameJolt & iTch.io

Head over to these sites and start browsing around. Bookmark anything that catches your eye, be it a gameplay mechanic or art style. See if by fusing 2 or more of these games, you can create something unique and fun. Remember, do not simply copy, all these exercises are designed to start building your creativity.

Academy Inside Extra!

Access our “All our Training and Live Q&A Sessions” inside the RisingHigh Academy.

This is just one of the lessons taken from our Platinum Standard Foundation Course available to all Academy Members. Ever taken a course and you’re just left to your own devices? Had further questions but no easy way to ask? We do things different here at RisingHigh, we’re here to help and support you all the way!

Not an Academy Member? Click Here to Learn More

 

 

99 Moons

Game #Reboot – Don’t ignore your old games

 

It’s always fun to look back over your old games and remind yourself how much work actually went into the creation! I’ve been going through our portfolio and preparing some update plans to breathe some life into the old faithful, so don’t ignore your old games!

1st on my list will be 99 Moons, our very first solo Apple Feature and the one that launched our Studio. We loved this game and we gave it a ton of love in the creation.

Regrets, we’ve had a few 🙂

Whilst I felt we did get a lot of things right with this game, I also made some pretty poor judgements too, the biggest being the learning curve. The first few levels of the game were way too difficult. The silly thing was is that these first levels of the game were actually the original prototype levels. We tested each of these early demo stages to ensure we could sufficiently ramp up the objects and the difficulty to give us the scope to have a pretty large project, and for some reason these were never revisited to ease the players in slowly. Mistake. Too intense, too hard.

This no doubt resulted in losing players extremely early on as we hit them with super tough challenges before giving them enough chance to get a feel of the mechanics and controls. This is by far my biggest regret with the V.1.0 launch version.

App Store Marketing Assets

Whilst I felt we did a decent job on the iPad Screenshots, I’ve never been happy with the iPhone screenshots as there’s just too much empty space. We’ll be changing these for sure in this new update.

 

99 Moons iPad and iPhone 6s Screenshots

99 Moons iPad and iPhone 6s Screenshots

 

After a while on the Googleplay Store, I ran an experiment on the icon as although strongly aligned with the games character, is was a bit “kiddy” looking and this doesn’t fit so well with the games difficulty level.

 

99 Moons Icon A : B Testing

I created a completely new look and did a 50/50 test.

A = The Original Icon.

B = The New Icon Design.

 

99 Moons Google Play Icon Experiment

The dark green line on the top is the new design, so it’s fair to say it was a good move and had quite an impact. We promptly ran an icon only update to the Apple App Store to capitalise on this data.

You’ll also notice that I left this running for around 3 – 4 months. This wasn’t really a deliberate move, but more so as we get very few downloads on Android and basically set and forget. But this is something we’re now working on to improve, but nonetheless, I love this about Googleplay, so worth it for that alone.

99 Moons Official Game Trailer – iOS & Android 

I gave the original app preview game trailer a quick upgrade to a new landscape version for better sharing on social, and not sure we’ll change this much for now, but it’s on the radar as we look at all the assets for the new update.

 

Brain Storm Session

So, there’s the low hanging fruit that we’ll be addressing without thinking as we turn our attention to running an update.

Jilly and I will sit down and see what we’ll do, how big the update it will be, and how much we change overall. I like the idea of adding some kind of level based mode, something that was missing from the original, along with some new characters I think.

So don’t let your old games fade and die, a big lesson we’ve learned over the last 18 months. Whether you push an update, or work on a sequel, it’s always worth spending a small amount of energy to revisit your portfolio and see what can be done with a fresh pair of eyes and a good amount of time away from the project.

You can see our Game Page Here with all the links to download.

Let’s do this