Mobile & Social Game Design : Monetization Methods and Mechanics, Second Edition book cover
2nd Edition

Mobile & Social Game Design
Monetization Methods and Mechanics, Second Edition

ISBN 9781466598683
Published January 22, 2014 by A K Peters/CRC Press
236 Pages 57 B/W Illustrations

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USD $56.95

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Book Description

Successfully Navigate the Evolving World of Mobile and Social Game Design and Monetization

Completely updated, Mobile & Social Game Design: Monetization Methods and Mechanics, Second Edition explains how to use the interconnectedness of social networks to make "stickier," more compelling games on all types of devices. Through the book’s many design and marketing techniques, strategies, and examples, you will acquire a better understanding of the design and monetization mechanics of mobile and social games as well as working knowledge of industry practices and terminology.

Learn How to Attract—and Retain—Gamers and Make Money

The book explores how the gaming sector has changed, including the evolution of free-to-play games on mobile and tablet devices, sophisticated subscription model-based products, and games for social media websites, such as Facebook. It also demystifies the alphabet soup of industry terms that have sprouted up around mobile and social game design and monetization. A major focus of the book is on popular mechanisms for acquiring users and methods of monetizing users. The author explains how to put the right kinds of hooks in your games, gather the appropriate metrics, and evaluate that information to increase the game’s overall stickiness and revenue per user. He also discusses the sale of virtual goods and the types of currency used in games, including single and dual currency models. Each chapter includes an interview with industry leaders who share their insight on designing and producing games, analyzing metrics, and much more.

Table of Contents

The Changing Tide
What This Book Is Not

What Is a Social Game? Are Mobile Games Social?
Meet Your Competition
BBS Games and MUDs
Just Being Multiplayer Doesn’t Make You Social
Great Mobile Games ARE Social
Interview with Words with Friends Creators, The Bettners

History of Game Monetization
What Do We Mean By Monetization
A Brief History of Game Monetization
Interview with Richard Garriott, "The Three Grand Eras of Gaming"

Why Create a Social or Mobile Game?

Social and Mobile Games Put a Lot of Power in the Hands of the Developers
Social Games Make the Developer Responsible
Social Games Give Power to the Users
Used Retail Game Sales: Friend to Social and Mobile Developers
Interview with Jason Decker of Pocket Legends, "Love Letters from Your Community"

Industry Terms and Metrics
Industry Terms and Metrics
Measuring Player Population
Measuring Monetization
Social Network Advertising
Mobile Terms
General Terms
Why These Metrics Matter
Case Study: Ravenwood Fair and the Use of Metrics in Game Design
Interview with Everett Lee of OMGPop, "The Science of Social Game Design"

What Is a Social Network?
What Is a Social Network?
Who Is the Average Social Gamer? Who Is the Average Mobile Gamer?
What Social Networks Are Popular Today?
Games Are Global
It’s All about Scale
Using Social Networks to Extend Traditional Games
Creating Social Networks as a Platform Holder
Is Apple’s Game Center a Social Network?
Interview with Janus Anderson, "Gaming and the Social Graph"

How to Acquire, Keep, and Regain Users
How to Build it So They’ll Come
The Purchase Funnel
Acquisition: How to Get Players
Acquiring New Users on Facebook
Acquiring New Users on Mobile Platforms
Advertising Efficiently
The Rising Cost of CPI
Redirecting Users for Increased Virality
How to Retain Users
Tracking Retention
Using Leaderboards and Messaging to Add Stickiness
Using Messages to Remind Users to Return
Only the Last Inch Matters
Interview with Exploding Barrel: "Give Them What They Want"

Monetization Strategies
Show Us the Money
Classic Premium Download Models
Play the Numbers
Case Study: Hunters Episode I and Different Monetization Methods
Why You Should Avoid Giving Players Real Money
Transitioning Models
Which Models Fit Best for Which Type of Game?
Interview with Ryan Cleven: "Social Platforms"

Virtual Goods
Fake Estates
Selling Premium Goods
Functional Advantages
Game Balance Considerations
Aesthetic "Vanity" Items
Interview with Dimitri Delattre, Founder of Deadpan Dodo—"Indie Perspective"

Greenspan for the Win
Single Currency Models
Dual Currency Models
Closed and Open Economies
Addressing the Matter of "Honest" Gameplay
Interview with Ben Lamm—"Controlling Chaos"

The Plentiful Tide
A Fond Farewell to Friends

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Since 1995, Tim Fields has worked in the game industry as a producer, project manager, design lead, and business developer. Tim has helped small studios and top publishers, such as EA and Microsoft, run teams that create great games. He has worked on shooters, sports games, racing titles, and RPGs using talent and teams from North America, Asia, and Europe.