posted Jul 16, 2012, 4:25 AM by Ndemic Creations
updated Jul 16, 2012, 4:51 AM
Wow – just wow!
Read on for the latest news of Plague Inc. – covering Mutation 1.3, Android, my views on freemium, latest sales/performance figures and the plans for the future.
- Plague Inc. is a critically acclaimed, high end strategy game for iPhone and iPad which has taken the world by storm – made by first time developer James Vaughan from Ndemic Creations (as a hobby!)
- Plague Inc. has over a million paid downloads, was #1 paid app in the US for 2 weeks and hasn’t left the top charts yet. It is a global hit with over 60 thousand 5 star ratings and over 10 million games played to date.
- Plague Inc. launched just 7 weeks ago, completely unknown with no marketing budget. The game has gone completely viral and its success is down to players loving it and recommending it to their friends. A huge thank you to everyone who has helped me get this far.
- Major content update coming soon for Plague Inc. which will add the Neurax Worm.
Mutation 1.3 – the plague of the Neurax Worm
Mutation (update) 1.3 for Plague Inc. is bringing a lot of new content and is looking really awesome. It adds multiple features that players have requested (more space at top of screen, ability to select your own music etc), loads of new events/achievements and two major additions which I want to call out:
- Modify genetic code: The ability to tweak your genetic code prior to playing – this will let you customise your play style (e.g. You can insert a gene which means you don’t need to pop bubbles or one that gives you bonus DNA at the start) Still fine tuning the details but currently, you will unlock a random gene each time you play a game and there will be 25 to collect in total.
- The Neurax Worm – this is a terrifying new Plague type which will require all new tactics to win. I’m really excited about this as I have basically redesigned the gameplay from scratch. It will have new graphics, new events, new victory conditions and a very different playstyle. (I view this as a mini expansion pack so it will cost 99c to play with this plague)
The Neurax worm is an invasive organism that burrows into the brain of its host to control them. Living deep in the jungle for thousands of years, human advancement into its natural habitat has brought it into contact with humans for the first time and given it the means to spread...Android:
Working hard on bringing Plague Inc. to Android and will have more news shortly. Not long to wait now – follow twitter / facebook to be the first to know when it is available.
One of the interesting topics when bringing a game to Android from iOS is how to sell the game. (Do I do exactly what I did for iOS and have a paid app or do I make it free and make people pay in game to upgrade it etc) Still working out the details here but I can promise that the core gameplay of Plague Inc. will remain the same. You won’t see loads of consumables/ currency appearing in the game.
I think that the freemium model with consumables/currency is very clever and definitely great at making lots of money. However, personally, I don’t enjoy games with lots of consumables in. I think it damages the fundamental game and cheapens the experience – turning players into cash cows and make you focus on extracting as much money as possible from them – rather than make an awesome and challenging game. So – don’t worry about any of that in Plague Inc. - I'm keeping Plague Inc. a game that I want to play :-)
- Plague Inc. continues to sell incredibly well with ~ 1.1 million downloads. Remember, this is all organic growth (people telling their friends and followers about it) – no advertising or marketing which pretty much all other big games use.
- Daily downloads are still high. Also - between 100k-300k play the game every day and well over 10 million games have been played in total. (its great to see so many people enjoying it!)
- I'm having good conversations with players on twitter, facebook and email. Players love the game and are keen to help make it even better by suggesting new features - this is very helpful so please keep doing it!
- Plague Inc. is living proof that you don't have to be a massive gaming company or spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to market your app in order to create a global hit. (although I'm sure those things help as well :P)
Plans for the future:
Once we have Mutation 1.3 released, the plan is to keep working – there is so much more stuff we want to do!
- Localisation: I want to bring Plague Inc. to as many people as possible and an important way to do this is translate Plague Inc. into other languages. Plague Inc. is a text heavy game so this takes a fair bit of time and effort but we are working on it. We may even have some languages completed in time for Mutation 1.3 (no promises though!)
- Mutation 1.4: This will add the much requested Zombie plague type. Like the Neurax Worm, it will feature new graphics, radically different gameplay and a very different strategy to master. Let us know what else you want to see here!
- And much more...!
Hope you found this interesting - follow me on twitter / facebook for more debriefs and updates.