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DeltaDNA recently released an article talking about the changes in payment patterns in free-to-play games. There’s lots of interesting news in there, but one exciting number really stood out to us at Mobile Game Doctor. According to DeltaDNA, over the last 3 years the percentage of paying players in North America has increased by ⅓ (and in Europe by ⅕). This trend is incredibly healthy for mobile game developers as it shows developers are getting better at monetizing a wide base of players and reducing their dependence on whales.

From time to time, I hear developers talking about how Pokemon Go was a flash in the pan, but they are just dead wrong. Even though some of the game’s early adopters have moved on, the game remains a fixture in the top 10 grossing slots. Earlier this month at Seattle’s Geekwire Summit, a couple of Pokemon Go team members gave a great talk on how they evolved Pokemon Go to keep it relevant and interesting for a wide range of players.

I recently got a chance to attend XDS – the External Development Summit – for the first time. It’s a fun and interesting conference for both companies that provide services to game developers and to the developers that need them. Although the primary target of the conference was AAA console developers looking to outsource art, there were some great learnings for Mobile Game Doctor and our customers as well. In several presentations both outsourcers and their customers talked about what it takes to make an outsourcing (or co-development) arrangement work, and a clear and consistent picture emerged. In order to keep both sides happy, you need to have clarity, transparency, flexibility, and outstanding communications. At Mobile Game Doctor, we try to practice all of these things.

We are proud to be part of United in Action, an initiative of the Casual Games Association that helps new independent developers find business success by educating them on important aspects of the business of games. Dave Rohrl, Mobile Game Doctor’s owner, was the chair of the working group on Monetization Design.

Trailer Park Boys: Greasy Money is an unusual idle game. The game features a very niche license and very unconventional gameplay. It defies many of the genre’s conventions, adding elements like an episodic linear narrative, very rigid ascension requirements, and an extensive gacha system that is woven deep into the game’s core. Yet the game has managed to be both a commercial and critical success, averaging at least a 4.5 star rating on every version and setting revenue records for the idle game genre. This is an insider’s view of how this unconventional design was born, and how and why it works.


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