When we push our games live here at Ubisoft, we closely monitor our player data and daily revenues, and we plan our updates based on player needs and as well as our production goals.
That’s why we wanted to enhance the social aspects of our mid-core live games in our line-up with a bunch of updates. But developing those features can be really costly and time consuming if not scoped properly, and we wanted to keep an agile mindset and a high velocity.
Our goal was not to develop a long list of social features, but to identify which ones had value in similar games to develop ours efficiently.
Identifying our market and main competitors
We started by shaping our market, selecting games of a similar genre to the ones we wanted to update with social features.
That view allowed us to also look at the global trends in terms of social features regarding this segment, in order for us to shape the needs and crucial features; again to answer our production constraints.
Breaking down social features per game
Once we had identified games that share the same market and players types as ours, we add them to our followed list to study in detail their social features, the game mode links and their effect on their Powerscore.
Looking at feature implementations
With the Game Analysis of followed games, GameRefinery allows us to have access to in-game screenshots of integrated features in a matter of seconds.
It’s particularly useful to have a glimpse of the rules, UI integrations, and overall implementation of those elements in other games.
First Time User Experience videos is another tool we used in order to see what other developers were doing with social features, by showcasing it to the players quite early in the game experience.
It also gave us ideas on how teach those elements to our players.
Thanks to GameRefinery, we managed to identify key social features that have high impact with a reasonable implementation cost.
Once pushed live, those social features had a huge impact on player engagement in our games without the need to iterate through many updates to find the right way to add social in our experiences.