Key learning: Working with a small, agile team to improving core features and rebalancing an entire game economy
Video - https://youtu.be/FkdIHRbu4U8
The 1st game which I worked on which was globally launched! Kings of Soccer is a PvP football game where you can collect and improve your favourite football players from the world’s biggest football clubs like Barcelona, Real Madrid and Arsenal!
I worked on finding key drop-off points in the FTUX before global launch by analysing data from soft launch. I also analysed and found out some balancing issues which would have hurt our long-term retention and monetization. To fix them, I redid major parts of the game’s balancing values from the ground up. As we are a small team, I have also on the responsibilities of analysing metrics and designing improvements on Kings of Soccer.
I am currently designing major social features which aim to improve long-term retention and monetization metrics.
My contributions -
· Designing core features like the FTUX, limited-time events, bot logic and virtual items
· Balancing game systems for better long-term retention and monetization
· Analysing game metrics in order to improve features
Key learning: Working with a large team to ship content regularly for a Live Ops game.
Platforms: Web Browser (https://zyngagames.com/play/farmville-two/)
I started playing Farmville 2 since the day I started working in Zynga. I still think it is a beautifully designed game with amazing graphics for a browser game. On the team, I went through every piece of documentation available and studied the game systems inside-out.
I was initially part of the team which oversaw creating cadence content. Cadence content were reskinnable features which kept players engaged with the core loop of Farmville 2. I analysed each cadence feature and improved its design by analysing game metrics and player feedback. Over the course of 1 year, I worked on and improved the performance (revenue and completion) of 8 of the 10 cadence features in Farmville 2.
At this time, I was also involved with larger features which needed to super charge a specific aspect of the core loop. I also created a new mechanic for the cadence content cycle internally called Market Mech (http://zyngablog.typepad.com/farmville_2/2018/03/the-souvenir-barn.html).
In addition to these tasks, I also maintained an extensive documentation of issues Farmville 2 players and the team had prioritized them for the team to tackle. I also championed various player love features and optimized the design flow of the in-game Marketplace.
· Shipped 17 large features and feature optimizations over 1 ½ years
· Designed features which improved monetization and retention metrics
· Conceptualized the game design spec, crafted the narrative design, and tuned game systems
· Researched player motivation and incorporated community feedback into the game
· Mentored junior designers and conducted Unity and GDC talk screening
Key learning: Creating content for an elder Live Ops game
Platform: Web Browser (Game shut down in March 2016)
Mafia Wars is a PHP based RPG which was primarily designed in Excel. With a small, scrappy team, we were able to create large amounts of content for players to play through every single week.
Our main features which drove retention and revenue were new Cities. New Cities were in-game Hubs which enabled us to reset our players’ wallets and give them new goals to work towards.
I oversaw Mafia Wars: Japan. From conceptualisation to final release, it took a team of 8 people 3 months to ship this feature. Unlike previous cities, our players got multiple endings upon completing the single-player story content. We created a system which adapts the narrative according to the choice you make in-game.
Mafia Wars was the first ever game I worked on. I learnt a lot on the job and started learning about creating complex game economies on the job.
My contributions -
· Shipped Mafia Wars: Japan (http://mwlootlady.blogspot.co.uk/2015/11/japan-district-1-rise-of-tatsuya.html)
· First live ops game development experience
· Learnt about system design on the job