F2P monetisation is extremely challenging that's why mobile devs need to learn about community, says Molyneux

World of Tanks and League of Legends show the way

F2P monetisation is extremely challenging that's why mobile devs need to learn about community, says Molyneux

Given his history of game making with the likes of Bullfrog, EA, Lionhead and Microsoft and now 22cans, Peter Molyneux's topic at Apps World 2014 was apt.

'Evolving from console to mobile game production - challenges, lessons learned and future predictions', he spoke about the contrasts between making console games like Fable and making mobile/PC games like Godus.

"Developing a console game was like having a long summer holiday. Mobile is constant crunch. There is an unending demand for content. It's exhausting," Molyneux noted of the development process for Godus.

Too much, too fast

Part of the reason for this is that 22cans underestimated the speed at which players would devour content.

"On average, people play Godus 12 times a day, with session length of between 10 and 40 minutes," Molyneux said.

"They played 6 weeks of content in 6 days. It's a massive challenge for content led games."

Currently only available on iOS, the game is updated every three weeks. "The team will likely explode when we go to Android," Molyneux added.

Show me the money

Yet, the most challenging aspect of going mobile for 22cans was monetisation.

"Monetisation is a drug. To get it delightfully right is the hardest psychological trick. It's extremely challenging," Molyneux warned.

"By any measure, Godus has been a success, except monetisation."

In general, Molyneux said that developers need to work toward a fairer IAP system, warning that "harsh techniques won't work next year".

More generally, he was unsettled that the predominance of F2P games was training players to expect game for free.

"It's incredibly challenging to get people to pay. F2P is constraining our ability to be creative," he said, although he has some ideas how to overcome the issue.

Although he didn't dwell on these specifically, he noted "PC gaming is making a lot of money. There's a lot of inspiration for mobile games in terms of the community of games like World of Tanks and League of Legends."

Contributing Editor

A Pocket Gamer co-founder, Jon is Contributing Editor at which means he acts like a slightly confused uncle who's forgotten where he's left his glasses. As well as letters and cameras, he likes imaginary numbers and legumes.