Blitz Brigade is an iOS and Android game by Gameloft. It is available now as a free download from the App Store and Google Play, and contains ads and numerous in-app purchases.
Blitz Brigade is a team-based first-person shooter that borrows elements and styles from other popular shooters and brings them to mobile platforms. At the start, the user is dropped into the main menu and can decide between playing the game and playing through the detailed tutorial. While experienced gamers will be quick to grasp how the game works, most will still need a while to adjust to the touch-screen controls. Most first-person shooters are released on PC or consoles, letting players use a controller or mouse. However, Blitz Brigade’s touch controls—along with the added option for tilt-based aiming—forces players to adapt to a system that hasn’t been perfected on mobile devices.
Entering the game’s multiplayer mode provides the player with numerous choices. There are two different game types: Domination and Deathmatch. Domination requires teams to keep control of territories, while Deathmatch is a traditional “kill to win” mode. Both modes are fun, and most players will have a preference. Upon starting a game, players will choose which team they wish to join and which class they want to use. At the start, there are only two classes available, but others can be unlocked from either playing the game or spending in-game currency. This pre-game screen also allows players to customize their equipment and weapons, creating a bit of individuality in the characters. Once in game, certain issues start to expose themselves. One of the most glaring problems with the online multiplayer is the apparent lag. There aren’t many mobile games with full 3D graphics that allow numerous players to compete at the same time. The lack of precedence is apparent in Blitz Brigade, and the gameplay suffers because of it. The troublesome controls combined with unreliable online play leaves much to be desired. Hopefully the network code can be improved with future updates, but for now, it hurts the experience. (more…)
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Gameloft yesterday released its earnings for Q1 2013. The French mobile game developer achieved sales of €54.2 million ($70.1 million), up 21 percent over the same quarter a year ago.
Smartphone and tablet revenues increased by 71 percent year-over-year, representing 60 percent of total group sales compared with 43 percent in Q1 2012.
Gameloft attributes its fast growth to the success of the free-to-play model. The company adds that more than 67 percent of its smartphone sales came from in-app purchases and ad revenues in Q1. In terms of which games performed well in the quarter, Gameloft says older titles from as far back as 2011 and 2012 like Dungeon Hunter 4: Zero Hour, World at Arms, My Little Pony, Ice Age Village, Order & Chaos Online, Gangstar Rio: City of Saints and Asphalt 7: Heat, have largely contributed to the company’s strong performance in the first quarter.
Gameloft hopes three recently released titles in the past few weeks including Dungeon Hunter 4, Iron Man 3 and Order & Chaos Duels, help grow sales in future quarters. Gameloft claims Iron Man 3 was the most downloaded game worldwide on the iOS after it was launched. Future releases include Gangstar Vegas, Despicable Me and Uno & Friends.
Gameloft didn’t provide an earnings forecast for Q2 2013. Gameloft’s share price closed today at €5.29 ($6.84), up 0.95 percent.
Finnish mobile game developer and creator of Angry Birds Rovio Entertainment announced the launch of its third-party mobile game publishing initiative, Rovio Stars.
Icerbreaker: A Viking Voyage by developer Nitrome will be the first game published under the Rovio Stars Program, followed by Spanish developer 5 Ants’ stealth puzzle game, Tiny Thief.
Many mobile game developers like Pocket Gems, Zynga, and Kabam have launched their own third-party publishing programs recently, and we’ve heard rumors Rovio would launch a similar program for a while. In January, PocketGamer.biz all but confirmed the program’s existance when it reported that 5 Ants had been signed with Rovio but at the time we weren’t certian that this was not a talent acquisition.
“Rovio Entertainment has positioned itself as one of the powerhouses of mobile entertainment, so moving into publishing is a logical step for us at this point”, Rovio’s executive vice president of games Jami Laes said in a statment. “We want to help our fans find quality entertainment among the more than 100,000 games available in app stores. That’s where Rovio Stars comes in.”
Games that leverage Rovio’s Angry Birds brand are immensely successful, with titles showing up at the top of our weekly charts regularly, but the developer’s more recent titles based on new IP have struggled. Amazing Alex, Rovio’s first new IP after Angry Birds, is currently the No. 258 top paid app in the games genre according to traffic tracking service AppData. The Croods, based on the DreamWorks animated motion picture, is currently the No. 247 top grossing app in the games genre.
Rovio said that Icerbreaker: A Viking Voyage is “coming soon” to iOS. Check back in with Inside Social Games for our full review.
Mobile-social gaming giant GREE today reported 37.9 billion yen ($370.9 million) in revenue and 10.8 billion yen ($105.7 million) in operating profit for the third quarter of 2013, a quarter-over-quarter decline of both sales and profits. Sales fell 4 percent and profits 24 percent. Year-over-year, revenues are down 18 percent from 46.2 billion yen ($452.1 million) in Q3 2012 and operating profit dipped by 56 percent from 24.5 billion yen ($239.7 million).
The Japanese company, which was established in 2004, also posted an “extraordinary” loss of 4.03 billion yen (39.4 million) on one-time write-off of assets related to some titles. The loss was part of GREE’s plans to shift growth strategy to “selection” and “concentration”, where it will streamline its portfolio of core titles. Card battle titles from Pokelabo, the Japanese game studio GREE acquired in October 2012, are performing well for GREE. Three of the top 25 grossing iOS apps in Japan include Guardian Battle of Glory at No. 7, Sword of Phantasia at No. 10 and Clan Battle of Fate at No. 25. GREE also plans to share its successful Android lessons with Pokelabo, while Pokelabo plans to do the same for GREE with iOS lessons. (more…)
Tower of Saviors is an iOS and Android game from Mad Head Limited. It’s available now as a free download from the App Store and Google Play, and carries additional in-app purchases.
At its core, Tower of Saviors is a match-3 puzzle game, much in the same vein as Bejeweled Blitz and Candy Crush Saga. The goal is to form lines of three or more runes of the same color. Unlike similar games, runes don’t need to be swapped to make an immediate match. Instead, they can be freely dragged until they’re in the player’s ideal position. This alone creates a sense of strategy not found in other match-three puzzle games. The strategy is increased with the numerous battle and character elements Tower of Saviors presents throughout the game. Progressing through the game or spending in-game currency will unlock character cards. Each card is marked with a color and when a line of runes is formed, characters of that color will attack the enemy. During each stage, enemies will appear at the top of the screen. After a set number of turns, those enemies will begin attacking the player’s team. If the player’s hit points reach zero, the game is over, but if all the enemies are defeated, the player will be rewarded with numerous prizes, including new characters.
Japanese mobile-social gaming juggernaut GREE recently laid off around 30 employees from its San Francisco office, according to GameIndustry International.
“We have recently aligned GREE’s U.S. studio to focus on creating the next generation of mobile social games,” said Anil Dharni, chief operating officer of GREE, in an official statement. “This shift in focus has been clearly demonstrated by the success and growth of our games. As part of ensuring that we are operating as efficiently as possible, we have made the difficult decision to reduce our work force. The employees leaving today have made great contributions to our success and we wish them all the best.”
In December 2012, GREE restructured its company, letting go 25 people, mostly from GREE’s social networking platform OpenFeint team. GREE announced the closing of OpenFeint a month prior to the layoffs. GREE acquired OpenFeint in April 2011 for $104 million as part of the Japanese company’s efforts to expand into Western markets.
Stay tuned to Inside Mobile Apps for GREE’s Q3 2013 earnings tomorrow.
Draw Rider is an iOS and Android app from 17Studio. It is available now as a free download, with a premium version available for $1.99. The premium version includes more features, more levels, and removes advertisements.
Draw Rider is a single player racing game where the player’s goal is to complete each stage within a strict time limit. While the game only runs from left to right, its use of rough terrain, balancing, and physics make the simple goal quite difficult to accomplish. Even with a high difficulty level, Draw Rider provides a concept that is simple enough for gamers of all levels to grasp.
Draw Rider places the player in the role of a stick figure riding a bicycle from the far left end of the level to the far right. The four on-screen buttons accelerate, brake, lean forward, and lean backward. There’s not much else to the gameplay, but those tools are more than enough to add a sense of challenge to the experience. That challenge is further increased by the rough terrain. While the first couple levels are mostly flat, the stages quickly become full of pits, dips, hills, and other obstacles and rough areas that will require the player to quickly master the controls and understand the physics engine if he or she wants to find success. To make it even harder, each level comes with three time limits, of which the longest much be beaten before the next level is unlocked. There are 37 stages in the free version of the game, which will provide more than enough challenge for the majority of players.
German social and mobile game developer Wooga today revealed that its latest hidden object game Pearl’s Peril is its fastest growing game to date.
Pearl’s Peril reached one million daily active users (DAU) in 24 days. Diamond Dash, a simple arcade-style game reminiscent of the older casual game Collapse and Wooga’s biggest hit, reached one million DAU 47 days after it was released on Match 16, 2011.
Wooga says that Pearl’s Peril continues to grow steadily. This is also evident in our weekly roundup of the fastest-growing Facebook games by MAU, which this week showed that the game added 305,741 MAU and a 6 percent gain for an estimated total of 5.4 million MAU.
Pretty Simple’s Criminal Case is this week’s fastest-growing Facebook game by monthly active user, bringing in 3.8 million monthly active users (MAU) for a 21 percent gain.
Last week’s fastest-growing Facebook game, King’s new match-3 game Farm Heroes Saga, dropped to the No. 2 spot with 3.2 million MAU, up 21 percent. King also took the No. 3 spot with its Pyramid Solitaire Saga, which brought in 1.2 milion MAU for an 18 percent gain, amounting to an estimated total of 8.5 million MAU. Playtika’s Slotomania Adventures came in at the No. 4 spot with 923,851 MAU, up 475 percent. Finally, RoyalCactus‘ Jelly Glutton closes out our top five fastest growing Facebook games by MAU with 757,677 new players for a 49 percent gain.
The only other notable gainer this week outside the top five was Plarium’s Stormfall: Age of War, with 412,398 MAU for a 23 percent gain.
|| Criminal Case
|| Farm Heroes Saga
|| Pyramid Solitaire Saga
|| Slotomania Adventures
|| Jelly Glutton
|| Pool Live Tour
|| Angry Birds Friends
|| 8 Ball Pool
|| Marvel: Avengers Alliancexxxxxx
|| Texas HoldEm Poker
|| Stormfall: Age of War
|| Monster World
|| Bubble Island
|| Pearl’s Peril
|| Bejeweled Blitz
|| Social Empires
|| Bubble Land
|| Jewel Epic
All data in this post comes from our traffic tracking service, AppData. Come back for our look at the fastest-growing Facebook games by daily active users on Wednesday and top emerging apps on Friday. You can learn more about Facebook’s new ranking system here.
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