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Saturday, January 7, 2012

Fascinating. Game Developers Take Note: Test. Test. Test: How wooga turned the games business into a science (Wired UK)


This is really fascinating - must play one on wooga's games. Read the full article here:


"...Wooga is a new type of game developer, one that emphasises metrics over creativity. Its core discipline is A/B or split testing, in which new features are introduced to a selection of users, and their reactions measured. Features remain only if users engage with them. If they don't respond, wooga tries new features until they do. Each wooga title is updated weekly; the initial release is just another stage in development. "After launch we become very metrics-driven," says Begemann. "During the first two weeks of Brain Buddies [wooga's first game], we did four or five A/B tests. It was very fast -- almost daily iterations."

The result is a rigorous process that practically automates the creation of a social game, and maximises each title's chance of success. "We A/B test everything, we optimise everything," says Stephanie Kaiser, a lead game designer. "In the product department, it's very simple," says Thorbjörn Warin, a former employee. "They have all of their KPIs [key performance indicators] and metrics. It's really, 'This week, we focus on nothing but retention, let's identify ten activities that can increase that.' In the first 60 seconds of Monster World, there are 13 to 15 tracking points. For a new user, when they start playing, every three or four seconds, Stephanie and Jens can see what is happening. Usually something has to be improved, and that's when creativity comes in." Wooga's users don't just play a game; they design it...."

Posted via email from Siobhan O'Flynn's 1001 Tales

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