How to Create a Mobile Game: 11-Step Guide to Creating a Gaming App

26 September 2022 Writer: Lera Grechanik 434 views

Digital products saw a huge spike during the pandemic outbreak. So did mobile games. The revenue from mobile games has soared. Alongside humanity returning to normal life, the revenue from games slowed the speed but continues to grow.

According to Sensor Tower, a 12% growth in money-spending on mobile games is expected per year over the next several years. In figures, spending is projected to reach $233 billion by 2026. In 2021 the spending was estimated to be $133 billion. So, it is likely to grow by 77%.

Also, the demand for mobile game creation is proven by AdMob stats. They indicate that 62% of people are likely to download games within the first 7 days after buying a new smartphone.

So, if kicking in mobile gaming industry feels like a cool idea, this article will reveal how to create a gaming app.

Mobile Game Development Process From A to Z

Market Research

When you create a mobile game app, you need to understand what the public likes and what are the current trends in mobile gaming. It makes no sense to make a mobile game app that no one will be interested in, and therefore the product won't be successful.

As well as any other application, mobile games have their own target audience that you should explore in order not to avoid wasting your time and resources to develop a game. The research results will guide you through how to make a mobile game app.

If you create your product with your audience in mind, it will contribute to creating a demanding product and raise profits.

Story Make Up

Aimless games quickly become boring and not exciting. According to studies, on average, games are deleted in the first week after download. How to create a mobile game app and avoid the same fate?

Make up a story. It does not matter how intricate or complex the plot is, the important thing is that it was attractive to the players.

Think of the characters, the main character, and the secondary. Set goals, achievement of which will advance to the next level and give rewards.

For instance, My Cafe’s authors came up with the main story and add extra quizzes and games to keep players engaged.

Concept Elaboration

The creation of the game concept is underpinned by several points.

#1 Mechanics

Mechanics refers to the way the game interacts with the players.

#2 Setting

The setting is the mobile game's universe. It is where the action of the story takes place.

The setting consists of two parts: Story and Ascetics.

Story is the mobile game development environment. In other words, everything that happens during the game. 

Ascetics is how the game looks, sounds, and is perceived by the player's senses.

#3 Technology

This step determines the devices on which the game will operate and the functions of the device that it will employ.

#4 Interaction

This point solves several important considerations: 

  • The way players are to interact with the game
  • The way the game and characters will be played and manipulated
  • The way the screen space is to be taken into use

Android vs iOS

The number of android users far exceeds iOS users. Android accounts for 70% of the market. However, iOS users tend to make more in-app purchases. Both platforms have strengths and advantages. And the choice is really not an easy one. So still, which platform to choose?

If your budget allows, we recommend cross-platform mobile game development to cover the two markets and multiply the benefits.

However, if you're still focused on developing a game for a single platform, we recommend researching your target audience. Yes, the first step, as you can see, is really essential. The audience breakdown will give you a neat answer: If the majority are Android users, go with Android game development, whereas for iOS prevails, head to iOS game development.

But the point to note is that if you pick one particular platform, you're targeting a limited audience, thereby deliberately limiting your reach.

Selecting Tech Stack

At Celadon, we use Unity to build a mobile game. Because of its flexibility and ease of use, as well as the availability of all the necessary mobile game development tools, the leveraging Unity platform does a great job.

We believe that Unity combined with C# creates magic. 

Surely, there are other platforms and languages that can be used for mobile development. Consult with your technical team to select the best tech stack that fits your needs. No doubt, they have their own vision of how to build a mobile game app.

Game Graphics Development

Design and graphics are key when it comes to user experience and retention. To create a game design, designers and artist work in collaboration with developers to endorse unique visuals with strong gameplay. Resting your vision and game, you can go for 2D or 3D mobile game development. What’s important is to Users are more likely to get excited about your game if you pay attention to detail, draw the scenes, breathe life into the characters, and contribute to the overall look and feel of the game. Users will play a game that has incredible and unique graphics.  Graphics of the game in the future can become branded, such as in the case of angry birds.

At Celadon, the graphics development roadmap is following:

Coding

Once the technology stack is selected, it’s time for programmers to do their work. It goes without saying that they compile the code. 

One thing to note is that it’s better to keep the code simple. If any questions or issues arise, it will be easier to spot and fix them. 

Testing

The game absolutely must be tested before it is released. Testing is a mandatory procedure for all games. Usually, performance, functionality, usability, compatibility, usability, and other things are tested. 

Mobile games undergo both manual and automated tests. 

After testing, QAs fill out reports, and the product is returned to the developers to get the bugs fixed if any. 

Then the game is tested all over again. It may take several rounds. Thus, the product is tested until there are no bugs left in it, and it is ready for release.

Monetization Methods

Well, the game is developed and tested, now it’s time to think over how to create a mobile game app that brings revenue. There are various monetization methods that can be used for mobile game development

In-app purchase

This is the most widely used monetization channel. If you play mobile games, you probably encountered it. There are a wide majority of game items that can be available for purchase. Relying on your game and its concept, It can be a game currency, character’s special attributes, energy, etc. The point is, players are unlikely to invest in anything that will not bring them value. So, put on sale a thing that will contribute to the player’s in-game advancement. 

Advertisement

Ads are another widespread channel to generate revenue. An important point here is that it’s better to make sure Ads aren’t annoying and don’t harm the game experience. 

We believe that offering value for watching a full ad is a good way out. The values may come in various forms like rewards or speeding up some in-game processes. 

Paid Mobile Games

This is probably the most difficult monetization method on the list. Taking into account the fact that 90% of mobile games are available for free. The challenge is to make the game as attractive and interesting as possible. Launching a good marketing campaign is required, which can be costly. 

Freemium Games

Freemium games are mobile games that are free for a certain period or level. After the reaching free limit, players are offered to buy the app. 

To make it work, players should be wrapped up in the game. If a game isn’t engaging this much, players won’t want to purchase it. 

Real Money Game

In real money mobile games, real money is exchanged for in-game currency. In turn, the game provides opportunities to win more currency.  Whereas the currency can be withdrawn. Since the game provides opportunities to earn, players are more willing to buy game currency and play the game.

 The challenge is to pick one that will work the best for both players and you. To figure it out, you need to research your audience. 

Launch

With your game fine-tuned and ready to hit the market, it's time to drop it on the stores. Make sure your mobile game meets the standards of the relevant app stores. The stores review every app. If your game passes the review successfully, the game will appear in the stores and be available for download.

Support and Maintenance

Launching the game doesn’t cut the deal yet. There’s still much work to do.  

To keep the app up and running, it needs to be maintained. The development team must be ready to quickly fix problems if they occur. 

The game must be updated to maintain engagement. Players will anticipate novel quests, plots, features, etc. Therefore, the journey starts after release.

Have an exciting project on your mind?
We're ready to help! Get consult with our specialist right here.

Mobile Game Development Solutions by Celadon

The idea to hire a team to develop a mobile game is always a win-win. When it comes to mobile games, quality has to go along with engagement, and engagement won't keep players without quality. So consider hiring a full-cycle team that not only knows what technology to use to develop a quality game but also how to monetize it and keep them engaged. 

Celadon is a team that cares. A high level of skills, a wealth of experience, and expertise are truths about our team. We've been developing mobile games since 2016 and have delivered a bunch of mobile games. Our portfolio showcases what it took for us to create a coloring book app as well as multiple other projects. 

Since our team provides full-service Unity game development services, with us your game idea will go all the way through from market research to the stores. We also work through monetization methods and help to select the most fitting one, as in this example of mobile game development

We aim at a long-term partnership, so the release is not the end of the road of providing mobile game development services. Our team will continue to work to support and maintain your base version of the game as well as develop updates.

Areas of responsibility - brand and growth marketing. Strongly believes that software development is an art and marketing is not just about sales but about sharing your passion. Her educational background in the field of business and marketing allows her to create expert content and help others to grow and expand knowledge.

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F.A.Q.

01.
What technology is better to use to build a mobile game?
Kostya
Software Engineer

At Celadon, we use Unity and C# to create a mobile game. This combination has never let us down so far! 

Of course, you can go for other engines and programming languages, if you see it to fit better.  We recommend figuring out this question with your developers. 

 

02.
How long does it take to develop a mobile game?
Nik
Head of Sales

Well, without knowing any details about the game to be developed, specifying development terms gets troublesome. The complexity of a game is a primary driving factor here. It’s odd to mention that simple games will take less time to develop rather than a complex one.

03.
Is it a good idea to develop a mobile game?
Lera
Copywriter

The mobile game industry continues to grow. Annual spending growth is expected to be 12% which will be equivalent to 77% by 2026. Talking about money, people are expected to spend $233 billion that year. 

Intriguing? 

Then here’s one more fun fact - 62% of people tend to download a mobile game within the first week after buying a new device.

So, yep, mobile game development is a definitely good idea.

 

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