Amazon Announces the Fire TV
In a never-ending war of set-top boxes including the Apple TV, Roku and even Chromecast, Amazon earlier today announced its foray into the competition: the Fire TV. As a “streaming device to end all streaming devices”, the company boasted the device’s $99 price-point, quad-core processor, 2GB of memory, and most importantly a dedicated GPU.
That’s right - a dedicated GPU. The Fire TV isn’t just another streaming device, it’s natively gaming-ready, debuting with an optional controller and 100+ games including Minecraft and The Walking Dead, priced at $1.85 on average per game.
As the Fire TV has made their debut and competitors like the Apple TV and Roku are overdue for an update, this might be a good time to start looking into set-top box game development. You can read more about today’s announcement here on Kotaku.
Free-to-play Whales More Rational Than Assumed
Do social gaming whales spend on impulse or plan out their purchases? A recent study by Ubisoft found that most heavy spenders were driven by long-term planning, based on research from their free-to-play game, Ghost Recon Online.
As big-data and gaming analytics are on the rise, analysis of the spending tendencies of players can have a huge impact on the industry, as Ubisoft researcher Nick Yee explained at GDC last month: “a lot of companies inside and outside the game industry are getting access to these big pools of data and they're starting to get analysts to look through that data. But oftentimes what happens is there's a behavioral finding from the data point of view that they can't understand because they don't know what the player was thinking when those behaviors occurred.”
In this article on GamesIndustry International, Nick Yee and fellow researcher Nicolas Ducheneaut offer their views on where the value of social whales stand. We have similar but slightly differeing views of Whales. Specifically, Social Whales as we call them. Here is more info on Social Whales.
The Importance of First Impressions in F2P Games
When your mobile or social game is free to play, it’s relatively easy to get new players and downloads. The hardest part is getting them to come back for more - and a first impression plays a huge part in that success.
In fact, a recent study showed that on average, people decide whether they like or dislike something within 50 milliseconds. So how can you ensure the best first impression among your players? Game user researcher Adam Smith wrote a great article on Gamasutra, outlining various tips and what makes users like/dislike your game. You can read it here.