Tower Crusher Review – Level Design Lessons

tower crusherToday I’m reviewing the game design of Tower Crusher. The game was developed on Unity and is highly focused on monetizing through In-App Purchases. You can download the game on the Apple App Store.

Gameplay is simple to master but feels repetitive

The game works as a duel between the user controlled characters and an evil castle. The user can block the castle weapons by smacking them as they come towards the characters. To strike the castle, there are magical attacks that the user can use. Each side has health points that gets reduced with any strike. When the user runs out of health points the game session is over. When the castle is running out of health, however, a new one comes to replace it immediately. The trick to master to win this game is that your attacks becomes much more powerful if you wait as long as you don’t get hit in the middle.

No sense of progress

As the game has only a single level, game designers are required to implement another mechanism to give users a sense of progress and achievement. Most game utilize two main ways to accomplish that: Missions and Records. Missions give users something to work for and keep him motivated. At the same time they also can be used to teach the user new tricks. Records are important for allowing users to excel. Good games even implement multiple scoring systems to make sure more users find their way to feel they are the best. Tower crusher misses out on these opportunities. The missions can only be accessed through the pause menu and record breaking is not celebrated. This creates a situation where all the sessions feels similar without a clear way of progress. As every session begins at the starting point, the game feels repetitive after a few sessions.

Virtual good prices are too high

in tower crusher, the lowest priced virtual good costs 700 coins while the average user collects about 100 coins per session. It's better to give users a chance to buy an item every 2-3 sessionsTower Crusher has an elaborate virtual economy with 13 characters, 12 upgradable items with 5 levels each, 17 boosts and 8 different purchasable coin packs. It pushes a “save me” upgrade at the end of every session. There is one important component missing though – the coin loop. The lowest priced item in the virtual economy costs 700 coins while the coins that a user can collect in each session ranges from 50 to 100. This means that the game coins collected in the game are worthless for the user and doesn’t motivate him to keep playing. A healthy virtual economy should include at least one single use (consumable) item that is within the user reach in the first few sessions.
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