Tom Hume on Casual Gaming
This morning after a long battle for the last week or so of being quite ill, I opened The Feature to read possibly *The Best* article I have read from The Feature! (Yes, I know that's saying a lot!) If you haven't yet read Tom Hume's
article on Casual Gaming
, you should!
He captures the essence of an important shift from hard core gaming experiences to engaging play experiences perfectly! Allowing players to engage lightly in the experience throughout their daily lives is essential to creating something compelling and addictive to be used on a mobile device. Allowing players light weight games or frameworks that they can think about while on the move, but not have to interact with continually in the virtual world is essential. Giving them tools which allow them to explore and play at their will fits the affordances of the mobile device
. And ironically, the experience becomes richer instead of less interactive as we do this. As well, most people with mobile phones are not gamers. These types of experiences that are easy and light weight broaden the target audience and are compelling to totally different user base.
In Tom's words:
So, what lessons can mobile games companies learn from this? Firstly, that the console games industry doesn't provide the only model for success in interactive entertainment. There are games out there with far broader appeal and a longer track-record of commercial success.
Secondly, that immersion is the exact opposite of what gamers want when they're on the move. Games companies should offer quick-fire experiences that can be picked up and put down as and when players want, and maybe keep half an eye on games which can keep players occupied mentally even when they're not in the process of playing them.
And thirdly, a corollary to this: that games demanding quick bursts of interaction needn't be shallow. It's possible to create rich experiences from quick-fire play.
Points two and three are my absolute favorite! Think about experiences that engage users virtually, physically, and socially. With interactions that are quick and light.
Thanks Tom for this article that states so well this essential shift in thought and opportunity!