Noodlecake Studios may have another big hit on their hands, with many titles and The Big Butcher android version being released. We had a chat with Noodlecake’s Ryan Holowaty, to talk about Alto’s Adventure, Android TV, Pokemon Go and some upcoming projects and how developers make money with the games. Below, we’ll speak more about Noodlecake studios and their success, you do not want to miss that.
Alto’s Adventure is one of the most simple Android that is currently trending on the market. What is your opinion on why Alto’s is this much successful and what is your conclusion on the balance between complexity and mobility? Ryan: I guess Alto maintained the line between simplicity and beauty impeccably. The gameplay is elementary, which makes the game approachable to the bigger audience.
Die-hard games might be looking for more intensity in things like tricks, but having a much simpler control strategy with easy understanding goals. Merge that with unquestionably stunning art style that is changing due to moving weather system, and you get this astonishing combination for mobile games. It is entertaining, easy to master and splendid to look at. What else is needed?
Ryan Interview – Noodlecake Studios and Their Success
Alto’s Adventure: What do you think, is simplicity the key to instant uptake? Or is it a big help? This kind of simplicity is said to exist in Pokemon Go, where the essential gameplay is easy to pick up and play. Or do you think Pokemon Go’s appearance is due to nostalgia, or the huge community?
Ryan: Simplicity plays a huge factor, as many other mobile games have. The session time of mobile games is strikingly short compared to console gaming. You have to hook players instantly, with free games versus paid. If the game has too much tutorial and complexity before getting to the fun part of the game, the drop-off rate is going to be huge. Pokemon contains the simplicity and novelty of real world gameplay. And many other AR games that were released before it. Next in line after Mario, Pokemon has the biggest franchise in the history of Nintendo. If you associate this to a snowball that is starting to roll down a hill. Getting bigger and bigger, games start just like a golf ball. But Pokemon Go had their start as a boulder from Indiana Jones.
Alto’s Adventure: With the recent launch of Alto’s Adventure on Android TV and Amazon Fire TV freshly, you evidently see some potential for longer gaming sessions on bigger screens, with a mobile-first title. Do you got data to back this up, or are you working on a hunch? And to which extent does the paid aspect affect the session duration? Have you ever seen longer gaming times on iOS compared to Andriod where Alto’s is free?
Ryan: Alto is next in line to those games that look amazing on small screens, but we had a feeling that this game would look better on a big TV. There were some interests from TV-based Android consoles like Android TV and the NVIDIA Shield. They wanted us to make this game accessible to these platforms, so we made a combination of our love for TV gaming and the desire to feature the game on their platforms, which got us to this decision.
Roughly, we found that paid games always come in longer session times leading to the fact that players feel more invested in the title since they invested in it. In this moment, we do not have a lot of data to go off of to make an apt observation between the two operating systems, but what I suggest is that the f2p version of Alto’s Adventure shows an impressive 4.4-minute mediocre session length, with over 5 million lasting over 30 minutes.
Alto’s Adventure: Did the free-to-play nature of Alto’s on Andriod had an advantage in in-app purchases or did the game price on iOS drive Alto’s money-making ability? How is that the game is free on one platform and paid for another one?
Ryan: The f2p version of Alto got us a ton of downloads, but the main thing is not IAP’s but instead an opt-in video. The IAP’s account for less than 1% of all revenue. Stating the fact that the average player would rather watch an ad than pay for anything.
Alto’s Adventure: Do you think developers are better off pricing the games or offering video ads to skip ahead rather than offering an army of IAP’s? Does Alto’s show better revenue from iOS up-front purchase price or Andriod’s video and revenue?
Ryan: Sadly, I am not allowed to speak to the revenue numbers of Andriod vs. iOS as we did not make a release for the game on iOS. I am not acquainted if it depends on the game. Mobile players look after a preconceived notion of quality with some games. This comes down to many things like the look, previews, developer history and store placements. Some games feel premium while others do not. None of them have errors and each one of them has its own benefits.
If you opt for the free version, you allocate on mass adoption or perfected monetization inside the game. If you go premium, you need fewer downloads to get the same revenue. Nonetheless, as the grossing charts show, free games are naturally more popular and have the ability to swipe premium in every way financially. If you take a look at the charts, only a couple of games is paid. If you make a launch of an f2p game and do not get that big adoption, it can be a financial catastrophe.
Alto’s Adventure: I did not comprehend that Alto’s on iOS was released by Snowman Games. Do you have an explanation for this situation?
Ryan: This is typical what we do. We have two types of publishing deals. The first one is an unreleased game that we put on all platforms and the second one is usually a successful game that is self-published on iOS. The developers later come to us to help bring it over to Android and make a release. Alto came out a long time ago on iOS. The team of Snowman contacted us because they did not have any knowledge of the marketplace and how to get an Android version going up. This is not uncommon for indie developers to come to us with games after they had success on iOS.
Alto’s Adventure: Talking about fresh releases, what is next in line for Noodlecake? Are there expansions planned for Altos for the ones that already got to the finish of the game and can not survive on Zen mode? Do you have any teasers about new games?
Ryan: We try to bring the game to a few more Android-based consoles, but when we talk about features or new modes. We try to follow with the Snowman team. We are tied up to them, so if they make an update to the game, we update the Android versions with the same features. Noodlecake has awesome stuff coming up, including new titles that launched The Balloons, The Bug Butcher and Flappy Golf. I can not talk anything specific, but there are some ports of surreal iOS games that Android users agitate for. As well some new releases on iOS and Android that are sequels to franchises, new IP’s and great content. A few of the new releases are ports of PC and PS4 games that have to be on mobile for the very first time.
Alto’s Adventure: What is your vision of mobile gaming in five years? Will AR/VR take over? Or will there be a space for retro and pick-up-and-play-titles even if they are played in VR rather than on mobile screens?
Ryan: In five years we predict things like using phones in VR with the Gear or early mock-ups of the Nintendo NX that have a portable components as well. The system will be a mixture of mobile and home at some point that you just plug it into the TV or take with you. If you have not checked, take a look on The Bug Butcher on Android. Do you prefer IAP’s, ads or upfront purchase price?