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Quick advice for making Android console games

Sameer Baroova, head of games at Playjam, took to the stage at Develop Conference today to explain what his team at GameStick has found makes a good Android console game.
Sameer Baroova, head of games at Playjam, took to the stage at Develop Conference today to explain what his team at GameStick has found makes a good Android console game. A plethora of Android-based games consoles have been announced over the last year, including the Ouya, the Nvidia Shield, and Playjam's own GameStick. When it comes to creating games for these consoles, or porting your Android games over to console, Baroova says that there are some key elements you can focus on to gain an advantage in the console market.

Mind the duration of play sessions

Games with longer play sessions, for example, work well with Android console games -- of course, this may be an issue with porting Android games to console, given that many mobile games are focused around short play sessions.

Pay attention to achievement design

Baroova says that when it comes to achievements, providing a mixture of easy and more difficult achievements is the key to pulling players into an Android console game, and then making them want to stick around.

Consider multiplayer

He also suggests that, if developers are porting their mobile games to console, it's worth adding multiplayer if at all possible, and adding elements like leaderboards and tournament capabilities. Essentially, anything that rewards longevity is the key.

In-app purchases might be the best route

When it comes to Android console game revenue models, the Playjam exec says that in-app purchases are proving to be the key model, with premium prices suggested only for more well-known brands and large-scale games. With regards to the "try and buy" model, Baroova states that this can be "cumbersome" on Android console, and really only suits newer games. He also notes that a subscription-based approach is currently untested, but that such a model would require good services -- hence, you'd need to be sure you could continue to provide such a model.

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