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Photon Engine's Mark Val wants to spark your competitive spirit

Meet the mobile games and Web3 experts at Pocket Gamer Connects Seattle, May 9-10
Photon Engine's Mark Val wants to spark your competitive spirit

Pocket Gamer Connects – Europe's leading mobile games industry conference – is heading to Seattle as we bring an array of incredible speakers, industry experts, and unparalled networking opportunities to the US west coast on 9-10 May 2022!

You can check out our speaker lineup, but to give you a teaser for what you can look forward to, we spoke with our speakers to share a little of what they'll be speaking on, and their thoughts of the mobile games industry.

Mark Val, head of growth at Photon Engine, will present an indepth exploration of multiplayer competition and tournaments combined with live game operations and UGC, and their impact on game management: what works and how you can do it.

What’s the most common mistake you see being made in the games sector?

Too many times, I see games launching too late. It is crucial to validate your game loop before putting energy into anything else. Is your game fun? Are your players coming back to play your game again? Are you gathering feedback from your players about what they like and don't like? Game developers are afraid to have their idea stolen or are shy to show what they have been working on, and this is bad.

Gaming is a business, and no business will be successful without happy customers. Make sure your game is fun, then try to find a way to make money, optimise your loops for growth, and think about marketing at the last stage. I see thousands of games every year, and most of them found their success very early by following what I just said. On the contrary, I keep seeing triple-A studios working on details and losing why their players are there in the first place. Focus on the fun, not on shiny visuals and later stage KPIs.

What developments do you think have been undervalued by the mobile games industry?

Real-time multiplayer games are having a slow growth. Five years ago, 12 per cent of the top 100 revenue games were real-time multiplayer, and now we are closer to 70 per cent. But it stops there. There is still a lot of room to grow in the Top 500 games.

What is the single biggest challenge facing the mobile games industry today?

There are not enough stores and too many different eyeballs. It's time to let games stores flourish and give accountability to game store owners. Lifting the permissions on external installation on approved game stores would help create more significant, engaging communities.

What is the most overhyped trend from the last 12 months, and why?

NFTs. Talking about trading securities even before having players having fun is rubbish.

What’s your favourite ever mobile game?

I keep switching all the time. But I keep coming back to classics from Supercell, Zynga, and others. It is lovely to witness the small or big changes made to stay relevant in the Top 100.

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Don’t miss out on attending our west coast conference this May – you can secure your spot now.