These are notes taken from the ‘Chelsea Howe on the Growth of Social Gaming‘ talk on GDC.
“The Facebook” launched on 2004, five years later, games reached the platform, that started new games (and clone games) that in little time (about a year, year and a half) reached millions of players a day, like FarmVille from Zynga, at a point, one in four people in Facebook played FarmVille.
New “Social Games” appeared, like farm management, simulation games, hidden objects and puzzles games like Bejeweled or Candy Crush, there was a boom of social games, Free2Play grew, the model is having a free game while introducing limitations (mostly time limits) and offer the players the chance to pay to avoid or reduce those time limits.
- DAU (Daily Active Users)
- MAU (Monthly Active Users)
- DARPS (Daily Average Revenue per Spender)
- ARPU (Average Revenue per User)
- DX (How many of the users who played on day one, returned on day X?)
- NPS (How would players recommend the game to a friend?)
- LTV (Life Time Value, total revenue expected per player)
- CTR (Click Through Rate, efficacy of advertising)
- CVR (% of players converted into spenders)
- CPA (Cost per Acquisition, how much does it cost to get a player, generally, marketing spend divided by players gained)
If you’re developing a a game related to Social Gaming it’s understandable that you will need to use a monetization system, trying to keep a morality and avoiding manipulating your players as much as possible to purchase in your game will be something appreciated both by your players and by the rest of the development community, you can, for example, include a daily restriction on how much money a player can spend, or give the player the full version of your game after they’ve spent x amount of money in your free version.