For my next project, I would like to create a tower defence game, either for mobile or tablet. Initially, I was unsure of which platform to choose, due to the prevalence of successful games within this genre for both platforms. For example, the balloons franchise is popular for both devices, and is easy to play despite a small screen size. This is due to the player’s freedom over the camera, allowing them to span over the battlefield.
Another popular tower defence style game available on mobile is Plants versus Zombies 2. However, despite a well-designed UI, the game interface can be too small on mobile, making the game more comfortable to play on tablet. This is due to the fixed number of rows to each level, forcing the player to always be zoomed out a specific amount. The ability to scroll across the map left to right mitigates some problems, but if the player had greater control over the camera, there would be less issues with mis-clicks.
Due to the prevelance of concerns with being able to successfully navigate the screen for mobile tower defence games, I have decided to make my game for tablet, to allow for more elements to be visible to the player without making the screen crowded.
To find some statistical data to support creating a tower defence game for tablet, I looked on statista. Firstly, I wanted to see how popular tower defence and other strategy-based games were. This information could give me an estimate for the reach of tower defence games and how well received they are by the mobile user base.
I found this graph particularly interesting, as it places strategy or tactical games as the most popular free-to-play genre in 2014 in France. I couldn’t find as specific information for the UK market, however I believe that it is important to consider the popularity of genres in other countries. If I wanted to have my game translated in the future, the french market would be highly considered due to the high potential for the game to be popular with a large portion of the player-base.
The next graph that I found was about past and future revenue for different game genres on mobile. Interestingly, strategy games made the most money in 2016, and they are projected to almost double in revenue in 2023. This shows that strategy and brain games are profitable to make, which could be useful in the future if I decided to release the game.
This graph shows the popularity of different mobile game genres in the UK. Compared to France, strategy games are significantly less popular, only holding a 10% share of the market, although you could argue that this type of game is still popular among players. Furthermore, this data is for Android only, and it includes paid games. Finally, a game doesn’t have to appeal to the majority of the market to be successful, so long as it satisfies a niche.