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    A total of 210 million US dollars has been raised, and the match-3 mobile game that you can’t understand has exploded again!

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    According to a recent Gamelook report, Dream Games, an international mobile game startup, raised US$155 million in Series B funding led by Index Ventures and Makers Fund. This raised its value to US$1 billion, making it another unicorn in the industry.

    Gamelook says that the Turkish studio has raised more than US$210 million so far. Dream Games said that its match-3 game “Royal Match” hit the UK, US, and German markets within three months of its release and quickly rose to the top 20.

    Soner Aydemir, co-founder and CEO, said, “We are focused on making great games that attract all types of players around the world. We are proud of how well “Royal Match” has done so far and will use this funding to grow.”

    Even though “Royal Match” is a new mobile game that has not been promoted around the world yet, it is already doing very well. Sensor Tower data shows that the game was downloaded more than 3 million times on both platforms in June, and it makes 11 million U.S. dollars a month, which is almost 50% more than it did in May.

    As you might expect, the Dream Games team is very strong. According to Gamelook, the two founders used to be product directors at Peak Games, where they made hit games like “Toon Blast” and “Toy Blast,” which helped Peak Games reach an estimated US$1.8 billion valuation. Value (acquired by Zynga), Dream Games also set a new record for Turkish startup funding.

    The horse from Turkey was a “Royal Match.”

    The success of this game does not come from how big of a change it makes to the way games in this genre are usually played. Instead, it comes from the small changes that were made to classic masterpieces and the great gameplay that made them stand out. From the tone and smoothness of “Toon Blast” to the many levels, props, and clicks of “Dream Home,” minus some annoying features, this is what “Royal Match” is all about.

    This combination not only improves the flow and rhythm of the game, but it also gives players a better sense of substitution. The effects of the props in “Royal Match” are more obvious and clear than in games like Playrix and King, where the opponents could switch between them. The game moves quickly thanks to fast animation and simultaneous online matching. This is one of the shortest match-3 games ever put together in a single game.

    Well-designed levels always make players feel like they are “nearly winning,” which makes them more likely to buy things inside the app. You will never get stuck on a certain step. “Royal Match” does not have any new gameplay mechanics, but the way it is implemented makes it a better gaming experience than its competitors.

    As the core of the game is a mix of social elements and light decoration, this type of game is a mix of “Toon Blast” and “Gold Coin Master” gameplay. “Royal Match” was first tested in Canada, Turkey, and the UK in July 2020. Based on the early data, it did better than other classic match-3 games, which means that the players’ direction of “puzzle solving + decoration” is on the right track. As long as the right changes are made, new games that are well-executed and look promising can be made.

    Before we go into more detail about this game, though, let us take a quick look at the past of puzzle-solving mobile games and the market for them. This will help our coworkers understand how good the game could be.

    The market for match-3 mobile games is worth US$5.1 billion.

    Puzzle-solving games have the most in-app purchases of any type of mobile game. In 2020, they will make 5.1 billion US dollars, which is 29% more than the previous year. Puzzle games will make up more than half of all casual game income that year.

    In 2020, block-busting, puzzle-solving, and classic match-3 games will be the types of games that will bring in the most money. Playrix has the most in-app purchase revenue in puzzle-solving games, with almost 35% of all match-3 mobile game revenue. King comes in second with 29%, and Zynga comes in third with 15%.

    There have been mobile puzzle-solving games for more than ten years, and the competition is now at the Red Sea level. However, as the category’s revenue grows, more developers will want to make puzzle-solving games, which will make the competition even tougher across the board. These games include “Royal Match.”

    The three companies with the most revenue are Playrix, King, and Zynga (after buying Peak Games), but their income comes from more than one game. The head transplant puzzle and decoration gameplay is very stable in 2020 (Dream Home, Dream Garden, and Dream Aquarium). With the release of “Harry Potter: Puzzle and Magic,” the classic match-3 game is also in 2020. It reached third place on the bestseller list at the end of the year.

    Making this happen is not easy, which means that the classic match-3 genre has a better chance of making a lot of money than puzzle and decoration games. This may be why Dream Games picked a strong core gameplay and a light decoration function.

    Although “Candy Legend” is the most popular game that switches the match-3 gameplay, King is not the first company to use this style. To better understand how switching the match-3 gameplay came to be, DoF analysts looked into the history of the style. The engineer who switched the gameplay is thought to have been Eugene Alemzhin, who made a game called “Shariki” in 1988. Inspired by this game, PopCap made “Bejeweled” in 2001. There are about 5 games that set the standard match-3 gameplay today:

    “Bejeweled” (2001): The most important thing it did was create the energy gem 3×3 block blasting rule. The game is easy to understand; in the classic mode, your goal is to match more gems of the same color. Each match gives you more points until you reach a certain score, which is fun. Also, even a small mistake can end the game.

    Adding super cubes (color collectors; get rid of squares of the same color in the panel) and stones (obstacles) is the biggest change in “Bejeweled 2” (2004). This game takes more risks and adds more game modes, including super cubes (color collectors) and stones (obstacles), where you have to move a stone through a prop.

    The 2008 game “Bejeweled: Whirlwind” added rotation and an unmatched block exchange. It was a follow-up to “Bejeweled 2,” but it went in a different direction, letting players rotate 4 squares, which gave them a new way to get rid of blocks. The biggest new feature is Lightning, which replaces the color collector of the previous game’s 5-block elimination synthesis and works more like the current entire line elimination.

    “Bejeweled Blitz” (2008): The coolest thing about this game is that two color collectors can get rid of all the gems in a panel.

    “Bejeweled 3” (2010). The most important feature was the ability to get rid of 3×3 and 1×1 horizontal and vertical lines. Its mission mode tried adding obstacles and more game modes, and Stratamax became the main level mode of “Candy Legend.”

    “Bejeweled 2,” “Bejeweled Whirlwind,” and “Bejeweled 3” all have puzzle-solving, challenge, and mission modes that set goals and rules. We are very familiar with these, especially “Bejeweled 3’s” mission mode, which has a big effect on the levels of other match-3 games, like

    Butterfly pattern: You have to finish the color elimination task before the butterfly hits the top of the screen. This is similar to how many games now require you to get rid of a certain number of color squares in a certain amount of time.

    Gold Rush Mode: Get rid of nearby cubes to complete elimination or collection tasks. This style of play is popular in many match-3 games, like “Candy Soda Saga”‘s ice cubes, “Candy Saga”‘s jam, “Dream Home”‘s box in the room, and “Royal Match”‘s vase.

    Alchemy Mode: When a player is eliminated, gold coins will be left between the rows, similar to how the candy series leaves behind jam or jelly and “Dream Home” leaves behind grass.

    Stratamax mode: Get rid of a certain number of gems in a certain step, which is how all flipping elimination games work.

    Balance mode: Get two-colored gems at the same time. This mode has not been seen in any other match-3 games yet.

    In avalanche mode, gems fall from the sky to fill the screen, and you have to collect a certain number of gems before the screen is full. There is not another mode like this one yet.

    Deeply buried treasure mode: This is a more popular way to hide things on the screen. To get them, players have to remove the blocks above them, like the bear and fish in “Candy Soda Legend” and the guardian statue in “Dream Garden” and “Project Makeover.”

    “Candy Saga”‘s candy bomb and “Farm Hero Saga’s” crop bomb are both time bombs. When the timer on the bomb runs out, the game is over.

    Poker mode: Gather gems to make playing cards (this mode is the only one like it).

    Snow storm: The snow and ice build up over time, and players have to clear the screen before it is completely covered. This is similar to how players have to clear the honey/chocolate in the candy series and the bubbles in “Dream Home.”

    There are only a few gems that can be used to destroy the city wall in most puzzle games.

    Classic elimination gameplay was first used in the Baokai and Bejeweled series. However, King’s “Candy Legend” release in 2012 really fixed some problems with the gameplay by making the story more consistent and improving the overall elimination experience by adding props and different desktop sizes.

    In the past, matching and getting rid of the two items outside the color collector had the same effect as using them separately. In “Candy Legend,” players can get rid of the two items together for a more noticeable effect. You can even figure out the steps in a certain area to get better elimination items.

    In “Bejeweled 2’s” puzzle mode, the “puzzle size” function was used to keep the desktop whole but limited the number of playable gems. “Candy Legend” directly tries to change the size and connection of the elimination desktop. Different levels of the desktop can be seen in different shapes, and sometimes it is split into two separate parts. These kinds of changes give game designers more freedom, make levels more interesting for players, and add the famous legend map.

    Also, the gameplay that was once thought of as a separate mode is now an obstacle in the game. Each obstacle can be used alone or combined with others to make a new level. This is important for making puzzle solving more fun, since most players do not like playing the same level over and over. If a game developer has 10 different obstacles and makes sure they work well together, and each level uses two different obstacles, then the game can offer 45 different experiences. If an obstacle is placed correctly in different places, it can also offer a different experience.

    Next, let us look at different desktop sizes, refresh rates (squares of different colors), and how random the items are. Even without a lot of R&D resources, it can still bring a lot of problems. To solve them, you need to plan the levels well and have a great tool for making levels.

    “Candy Soda Saga” came out two years after “Candy Saga.” More challenges, game modes, and desktops were added. For example, matching squares can now bring fish props, change the direction of gravity, and add more desktops. Even though not all of these game types are used in the head game, its popularity shows that variety and excitement are good things.

    Before 2016, King was the clear leader in puzzle games. But then Playrix’s “Dream Garden” added click removal, which made the genre very different. In “Dream Garden,” unlike the candy series, the props are not limited to colors and can be used anywhere in the level. This makes players feel like they have a bigger role in the game. It even gets rid of the indirect trigger color collector and the whole line removal. “Dream Garden” gives square blasting more care and makes large-scale elimination work better. The bigger the area that can be taken away, the rarer the thing. Soon after “Dream Garden,” Playrix released “Dream Home.” Based on learning how to use props in “Candy Soda Legend,” “Dream Home” kept the gameplay of clicking on a prop to make it do something.

    A detailed look at how to play “Royal Match”

    In spite of the fact that the leaders of Dream Gams may not have worked on “Lost Jewels” while they were at Peak Games, the excellent gameplay of “Royal Match” makes it clear that they must have used what they learned from Peak Games on the project.

    The match-3 core gameplay of the game looks and feels different, and the way game art is executed directly impacts the success of game design. The game’s props look good in terms of both color and shape thanks to the bright and saturated color design, and players can quickly find the squares on the screen. It will make the level more difficult for no reason if it is hard to tell the difference between different items. For example, if it is hard for the player to tell which colored items are where, they will take longer to solve puzzles and become frustrated, even if it is not a big deal. In the same way, the contrast between the background color, the desktop, and the props is very important. Changing just a little bit of the grayscale will have a big effect on how the props look.

    There are 9 types of match-3 mobile game computers, each with its own definition:

    When you play puzzle games, speed is always important. In this way, “Royal Match” is very good, almost as good as “Happy Match” by Le Element. The game’s props, obstacles, and falling animations are shorter, and the pieces are just right to keep you busy without making your screen look cluttered. Even though other games are pretty close, there is always one part that moves more slowly. To give you an example, “Candy Friends Legend” has a very fast beat, but the character movement in one level is very slow. It is not fun for players to finish the elimination and then have to wait to watch the slow animation across the screen. Even better, “Royal Match” gets rid of the loading time between level retries, which cuts down on the time each game is not legal.

    “Royal Match,” like “Dream Home” and “Candy Soda Saga,” lets you eliminate things at the same time. This means that you can still work while the screen changes. In “Candy Saga,” if an action causes the elimination effect, the player can not continue working until it is over. In “Royal Match,” on the other hand, you can keep going even if there are other things going on the PC. There are two benefits to this design: first, the player has more power over the level (rather than having to wait), and second, the continuous elimination time can be increased. Increasing the time for continuous elimination makes the level more fun.

    There is, of course, also a downside. For instance, it is simple to make a mistake during continuous elimination and break the original elimination process. As well, this is a pretty low price.

    The game should at least make people think it might be fun to pass the time. There needs to be a balance between “too easy” and “too harsh” for developers. “Royal Match” is different from most products on the market because it not only strikes a good balance, but it also makes things easier for players by including things like the four things below:

    1) There are a lot of props, especially bomb props. Things tend to have more power when they are rare; the rarer they are, the stronger they are. Things like fish or blades might be different. They might not work so well in the desktop elimination effect, but they can change the next elimination. The picture below shows how different shooting effects look next to each other. When it comes to special effects, “Royal Match” is the most lively.

    2) Unlike other games in the same genre, Royal Match will not make you use tools to get rid of opponents when there are other ways to do so. This makes players feel like they have a bigger role in the game. You can clear the screen and then pick to use props. This is very important for levels where the PCs are small.

    3) The rotor and the rest of the props are very well thought out. If the propeller’s original goal disappears before it gets there, for any reason, it will pick another item that will help the player reach the goal. This is a great way to get rid of combos, but it does not work in other games. A pleasant experience.

    4) A small point that is worth making. Once enough items are gathered, the process of making obstacles like the post box will end. That is, the game can tell you when to stop deleting people, so you do not have to do any math. To use the video below as an example, the player can close the mailbox by getting enough envelopes.

    Just like the level can make you happy when you win, the game design cares about how the player feels, right down to the most useless props and obstacles.

    “Royal Match” lowers the feeling of “almost winning.” Buying extra steps relies on how likely it is that the player can win in the next 5 steps. If the player thinks they can not finish the level in 5 steps, they might not want to pay. When people play idle puzzle games, they do not usually consume, so when they do, you need to give them a good experience. You can get the design of a level by buying one step. This shows the value of consumption and the link between paid steps and steps that are used up. Making this type of level is not simple. You need to be very good at designing levels. This is something that every puzzle game should try hard to offer. In “Royal Match,” almost all of the cards only need one or two extra steps to get through the level, which makes it very easy to get people to use them.

    Extra level: a new way to pay

    The rare reward levels are another type of games that can be used as a guide. As a reward for players, these levels do not show up very often in European and American puzzle games. However, Asian makers are great at making them, like in LINE’s “POKOPANG” puzzle game. One way that Dream Games gets gold coins is through these levels. The rate at which gold coins drop in these extra levels is much higher than in regular levels.

    Gold coins are the game’s money. You can use them to buy lives and steps. There is nothing hard about the extra rounds. Most levels give you between 300 and 700 gold coins. In normal levels, you need 900 gold coins to buy steps. If you get enough gold coins in other levels, it will be easier to get through levels that are harder.

    Dream Games has raised the bar for how popular match-3 games are made in general. They fixed a lot of small problems that were bothering players and made a puzzle-solving game with the player experience in mind. It wants you to finish the level and even gives you money to do so.

    What draws people in

    “Royal Match” is more interesting for its puzzles than for its main gameplay. So, to sum up the whole process, we can say the following:

    The social and artistic core gameplay was chosen by Dream Games. The simplicity of “Gold Coin Master” and the social and team gameplay of “Toon Blast” were added. “Royal Match” is kind of like a “light puzzle and decoration” game. In “Coin Master”-style decoration games, each item has a set spot where it goes, so the player does not have to change it. That this game is based on “Coin Master” instead of “Dream Garden” could be because of two things:

    1) Keeping up with a puzzle game and a decorating game needs different amounts of content. The best way to keep a small team is to focus on the core games and look for ways to cut down on work. 2) You should play to get a piece of the standard match-3 market, not the puzzle and decoration game market.

    Today’s games depend on events and how they work online as a whole to be successful. When it first came out as a test, “Royal Match” only had a few activities, like weekly tournaments where both people and teams could play. After a while, they added more collection tasks. Dream Games does not have as many tasks as other puzzle games. This is something they should work on.

    Adding more types of activities can make the game last longer and, ideally, keep players from leaving, since the core gameplay is pretty light. Without anything to do, players will leave. At the moment, the game will stop when the player’s life is used up. For the Candy Legend and Fantasy series, the answer is to add some small joint activities and make the side progress activities bigger. These are usually activities that happen once a week. Because there are only over 600 levels and the difficulty curve is above normal, players often get stuck in their progress. Since there is not much else to do in the game, some players may lose because they have nothing else to do.

    When it comes to making the main parts of the game, the Dream Games team does a great job. It does things in a different way to make the puzzle games more interesting, and it was not hard to make. Not only activities, but also information. No need to do a lot of it.

    What else could be done to make “Royal Match” better?

    That being said, adding more variety is the most important thing for this kind of game. Even though the level is great as it is, adding more variety can make the content last longer. The Dream Games team can also add more challenges or things that can be used as filler, like more jams and chocolates in the elimination game. And so on with props.

    If the little river in the game is used correctly, it can also make the desktop look different. However, it can not make the desktop too hard to understand, and the player can not need too much planning to get through the level. When rivers and falling obstacles are combined, for example, they can make the level harder. But when obstacles from different maps are combined, they can also make the game longer.

    Multiple computers can make it hard for players who plan ahead to agree on how many steps to take in a game. Some people really like this design, but others really dislike it. When the design is bad, it can lead to bad things.

    Lastly, to win, almost all linked cards need to get rid of everything on the desktop. To put it another way, your goal is always to get rid of everything on the screen. But in some other elimination games, players do not have to get rid of all the hurdles in order to win; as long as they reach the goal, the level can be more interesting.

    Are you ready to take over the world of match-3?

    When it comes to the experience, “Royal Match” is easy, pretty, smooth, and fun to play. For Dream Games, this is hard to find, so the game’s rise in sales makes sense.

    For puzzle games, it is hard to make the gameplay better, but “Royal Match” has made big changes to the interface, animation, level design, and economy system. We learned from this game’s success that you do not always need to come up with a new way to play or a different core idea. You can also break through the Red Sea easily by tightening up the details and putting the player first.

    It is hoped that “Royal Match” will become one of the top five match-3 games if they can fix the issue of the lack of different activities and levels. Their progress in game creation will surely inspire other developers. Maybe the next big thing in match-3 games will not be people, but an engine that can adapt to all the new features and systems.

    The game did almost everything right to get into the general market from a marketing point of view. There are a lot of people who like its style of painting, so it is easy to get new buyers. Dream Games has enough money for purchase marketing now that they have a new round of funding.

    A change in IDFA rules could affect the number of purchases made by “Royal Match.” But it is not hard to improve user placement for games that focus on key KPIs and ROI. But Dream Games is still in terms of how many copies are bought. The company needs to get more knowledge because its competitors, like Playrix, Zynga, and AppLovin, are buying masters.

    This article is curated from Source and we only provide the English version of the story.

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