Game Reviews

Cool Trance Game and Some Ideas for Improving It

Angularis is one of those games that when you first look at them you have a feeling that with the right music it can put you in a trance. Something about it’s darkness and the beams of light I guess. The game is made with Unity for iOS and Android.

Rotate and match  the light pattern

The gameplay itself is pretty easy to pickup. There are two short beams in the center which you can rotate left and right in 90 degrees at a time while there are 2 longer beams that come towards you. Every time, the beams are coming towards you, you should rotate the short beams to match the pattern of the longer ones. That’s it.

Instant gratification for matching

While this can be fun for a short while, I think the game has more potential with some adjustments. The first thing I would do is make the longer beams closer together but moving slower. This gives a stronger sense of dimension, and in this case it will create a movement illusion. In addition, it will give the user a chance to read the next moves if he already matched the pattern and has a split second to look ahead. In other words, it gives the user instant gratification for matching the pattern early.

Diversify the difficulty curve

The other thing that can make a big difference here is to split the game into quicker patches and slower patches and even cool down patches. It makes the game less monotonous and give users some time to breath and enjoy what they accomplished. During cool down the game can add some visual elements in the sides of the screen as well as different music to create transitions between sections.

Find your game progression scheme

The game is currently using Gamecenter for scores and achievements but is actually lacking the more basic sense of achievements – there is no sense of progress. Fixing it requires some work: the first step is come up with missions that are related to gameplay and are things the users can control. Here are some examples:

  • Do a 360 rotation to match a pattern
  • Do a 270 rotation when 90 degrees are needed
  • Match a future pattern before its turn reached
  • Survive the first quick patch
  • Match 10 patterns in the least amount of rotations possible
  • Reach a certain score
These are obviously just ideas, but they are much more interesting and actionable than the current ones. The next step is to communicate the missions to the users as they enter the game mode. This is pretty basic if we want users to be aware of the missions. The last step is to celebrate the completion and reward users for their success.

Upgradable goods will bring your users back

Another important suggestion is to take advantage of virtual goods to create a sense of progress and make the games more interesting. In games that have no levels, it is common to add upgradable virtual goods to give users something to work for and motivate them to keep playing. The options in this game are quite limited but there should be an opportunity to set this up around “temporary shields”. What I mean by temporary shields is the type of virtual goods that lasts for 10 or 15 seconds and provide immunity from traps, enemies and other stuff that will normally kill you. In Angularis, the main reason for the turn to end is when the user doesn’t match the beams on time. A shield might look like a round source of light that can connect beams even when the user fails to align them. Developing further on this concept means creating two main virtual goods:
  • Upgradable good – shields that has levels that increase their effectiveness
  • Single use / resource good – energy that is required to power the shield

The combination of these two usually provides better results. The single use goods, increase the engagement of users with the virtual economy and the upgradable goods give users motivation to come back and make it to the next level.

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2 Comments


  1. Owleet Entertainment

    September 30, 2014 at 12:50 pm

    Hi Yaniv, we are the developers of Angularis. We loved reading your article.You are absolutely right. Maybe you have the time for a talk? Is there a way to contact you?

    Reply

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