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App Development
7 minutes read

How to Make a Game for the App Store 

By Mario Tatis
By Mario Tatis
App Development
7 minutes read

Mobile games have come a long way from the simple two-dimensional games like Snake that used to be popular on flip phones.

The mobile gaming industry has grown immensely and is now worth over 100 billion dollars. 

As a result, mobile game development has caught the interest of many businesses and app development teams.

However, building a gaming app requires more than just app development skills and the latest game engines. 

This post will not dive into the technicalities of how to build a game app. Still, it will cover critical information that game developers should consider when developing their game idea. 

Making a Successful Gaming App: Key Considerations and Concerns 

While developing gaming apps requires technical app development skills, several other considerations play a critical role if you want to make a game that is successful and stands out among the many games on Apple’s App Store and the Google Play Store. 

Developers who want to build mobile games should consider the following key aspects of game development:

  • Market research and self-reflection 
  • Ideation
  • Build a story 
  • Consider the platform
  • Create a monetization strategy 
  • Focus on game app design 

Market Research and Self Reflection 

Why does your business want to develop a game app? What aspects of mobile game development inspire and motivate you?

There are hundreds of thousands of app games available to consumers.

To create a game that delights new users and succeeds in app stores, you must understand and communicate what makes your game and brand unique. This is your unique selling point.

Without in-depth market research and self-reflection, it will be difficult to establish your unique selling point.

Your business needs to understand what competitor gaming apps are successful and why they keep players engaged.

This research and reflection will help your organization identify the top-grossing games and what main features are popular with gamers. 

Ideation 

Every gaming app needs a great idea. Therefore, ideation is a vital component of the game development process.

If you want to make a game app that is popular, work on a great idea first. Then work on delivering the game assets in an aesthetically pleasing manner. 

A game app driven by a great idea can be an instant success. For example, look at the popular game Angry Birds.

This game is driven by a great idea and supported by the right technology. The game is extremely simple and highly replayable, which increases its maximum shelf life and potential to generate revenue. 

You don’t need a world-class gamemaker studio to create a game app that people return to repeatedly. Instead, what your organization needs most is a great idea. 

Build a Story 

Once you establish a good idea for your game, it is vital to build a story that delights users. Your game should introduce new characters, power-ups, and new features as users progress through your game in a manner that makes sense. 

If you’re unsure how to build a great story, your organization can follow popular genre conventions based on the type of game it is creating.

New games don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Instead, using a familiar game engine will simplify gameplay for users. 

Your story should complement all the assets of your game. Game apps with stories that stick out and don’t contribute to how the game works will push users away.

Consider the Platform 

Choosing the right platform is vital to any successful app development project. Unfortunately, when it comes to mobile apps, Android and iOS are the two dominant platforms.

There are more Android users than iOS users.

However, iOS takes over 60 percent of all money spent on mobile apps and games. Users are far more likely to spend money on the App Store than on the Google Play Store.

As a result, if you want to create games that will generate revenue for your organization, the App Store is a better choice. 

Each platform has mobile devices with differing capabilities. Your organization has the option to develop a cross-platform app, but native apps can use the platform’s features more effectively and deliver a better gaming experience to users.

Most companies will avoid developing two native apps because of the associated costs.

It is important to consider the game engine you want to use. It might not be compatible with the platform you want to choose. 

Create a Monetization Strategy 

Building a game represents a significant financial investment. Therefore, a vital part of your app will be the monetization strategy employed by your business. The strategy you choose should reflect the type of game you are creating. 

For example, the freemium model relies on in-app purchases, but it isn’t the best monetization model for first-person shooters.

Another popular way to monetize your game is through advertisements. 

You can sell ad space to businesses and an ad-free version of your game to users who want to skip ads.

There are many such games that utilize this model. For example, this option works well for word games and mathematical puzzles. 

Other models offer a free simplified version of the game for users to play for free. When users are interested in the game, they have to pay for the full version.

This model allows users to try a game before buying it to ensure they are interested. 

Finally, you can decide to sell your game at full price. Many apps also do this, but they tend to be established brands instead of a new app. 

Focus on Game App Design

To make a game app come to life requires strong game design. Game design can be more complicated than other apps because designers must create characters, environments, and game mechanics. 

Games require graphics and gameplay logic to be blended in a pleasing manner. This is difficult for developers to accomplish on their own.

Your developers should be working with skilled designers to ensure your game app has a design that will please users.

The Different Types of Mobile Games You Could Build 

There are several kinds of app games you could create. When it comes to creating apps, there are almost no limitations.

However, if you want to create an app game that will be successful with users, there are a few popular types of app games you can consider building, including:

  • Arcade
  • Puzzle
  • Strategy

Arcade 

Arcade games come in many shapes and sizes. The main features of arcade games are varying levels of difficulty, quick levels, cartoonish action, and high replayability

Classic examples of arcade games include Pac-Man, Frogger, and Gallega. Some of these games have been created in app form for mobile phones, but there are also recent apps that offer similar arcade gameplay, like Crossy Road or Temple Run. 

Puzzle

Puzzle games have a long shelf life because users can return to these apps repeatedly. Good examples of puzzle games include Sudoku, crosswords, and Wordle. 

You can also create a modern puzzle app like the popular Monument Valley series. There are many ways to create a good puzzle, from classic word games to new three-dimensional worlds. 

Strategy 

Strategy games account for one-third of all game apps. As a result, these apps generate a lot of revenue. One of the most popular examples of a strategy app that has achieved a lot of monetary success is Clash of Clans. 

Many strategy games offer a premium way to play without ads or interruptions, but this type of game is great for almost any app monetization model.

Final Thoughts on Building Mobile Games

Mobile game development can be a lengthy process, but it can also be fruitful for your organization. The key is creating a great game idea.

If you want to build a game for the App Store that will delight users, you have to use the right technology.

Modern game engines are capable of delivering incredible mobile experiences to interested gamers.

If you want to know what scripting language is best or what development tools are the most effective, reach out to an experienced app development partner.

With all of the potential revenue, a game can generate, it makes sense that so many organizations are interested in these projects.

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