Battle Bowls - Interview with the developer of a fantastic app

Did you have any prior development or coding experience?

Yes! I had worked in the games industry for over 15 years and released our previous mobile game, Oopstacles, under Crystal Pug. Throughout my experience in the games industry, I have worked as a designer and programmer.

What was the most challenging aspect of developing mobile app?

Battle Bowls is our second app and I went all-out once again with the feature set! I wanted to include as many features as possible to keep users engaged! This led to a bit of design blowout from what I initially planned and caused the schedule to slip. For rewards mechanisms, I didn’t want to do just the same thing, I wanted to add a little skill. So I created a Match-And-Win mechanic that memory-based rather than a random wheel. On top of that, I added all the bells and whistles including multiple game modes, single-player, multiplayer, voice chat, achievements, leaderboards, iOS stickers, daily gifts, and more! Managing all of this once again in an evolving OS environment was a real challenge! The majority of this work, including marketing and promo materials, was done by myself this time as some team members had moved on.

After working at other large games companies for many years, Matthew took the risk of starting his own company from scratch - Crystal Pug - with a few friends and colleagues to contribute part-time. Videogames have always been a part of his life and he loves to design and innovate. Crystal Pug aims to bring the world quirky games filled with joy!

Name a few of your favorite apps and reason you love them.

Really enjoying Super Mario Run - as a big fan of the console series - and how they reduced it down to a one-touch mechanic. Very clever! Also been playing a lot of Archero - love the twitch-based battle mechanics mixed with RPG elements!

How long have you been working on this app?

Battle Bowls was developed over about a year, working on it part-time. It was our second app and a big challenge to develop the majority of it myself!

What need of the user did you have in mind when developing this app?

I wanted to make a casual version of lawn bowls that was easy to pick up and play but had a lot of replay value. For this reason, I simplified the rules of lawn bowls - automatic placement of the jack, fewer turns, as so on - and decided to add powerups to make it more of an arcade experience!

In what way do you think your app is better than similar apps on the market? Please describe in detail what innovation you think you bring and what you are proud of in your app.

Lawn Bowls is a beloved Australian sport that originated in England. It's played by young and old, often on a pleasant Sunday afternoon, barefoot with a drink in hand. It's a sociable sport but also very competitive! At the highest level, it is featured in the Commonwealth Games. I wanted to bring both the social and competitive aspects of the game to mobile, but with an arcade twist for a casual audience. The first step was to distill a game that can go on for hours into just a couple of minutes. So, I limited the game to one round of three balls each, with no point-scoring mechanism - the players simply win or lose the game. To quicken the setup process, the jack is placed by the system instead of being rolled out by a player. Secondly, I wanted to add more arcade spice to the game. This would separate the game from reality and take full advantage of the mobile platform. I added a suite of power-ups that could either benefit the player or adversely affect their opponent. Thirdly, I wanted to address replayability and retention. I surrounded the core game with a leveling mechanic and a variety of progression unlocks. These unlock include avatars, badges, balls, power-ups, and buffs. Once unlocked by the player level, these items can be purchased from a variety of sources. Some items, such as balls, have stats that affect gameplay, whereas other items, such as badges, are purely cosmetic. In order to keep the gameplay fresh, the jack is always randomly placed in the rink. As the player levels up, it is placed further down the rink, in addition to an increasing number of obstacles that may spawn in front of it. This keeps the player challenged in a smooth curve as they skill up and become increasingly proficient at throwing the ball.

What are your future plans and expected features of the coming new versions of this app?

Over time we have added many new seasonal avatars, challenge levels, and leaderboards! Keep an eye out!

Assuming new users of your app are reading this page. What do you want to ask them to do (contact you about X, Share the app, etc.)?

Please give Battle Bowls a try! It has single and multi-player game modes and daily rewards. Try to get to the top of the leaderboards! If you like the game, please rate is positively, share it to your friends and follow us on Facebook!

Battle Bowls

About App: Like Lawn Bowls? Bocce? Curling? Then try out this arcade bowls game! All your favorite avatars have returned with new friends!
- Single-player and multiplayer modes!
- Power-ups to thwart your opponents!
- Voice chat!
- Upgradable bowls and leveling system!
- Save your progress to the cloud!
Requires device location for customized advertising and analytics. Requires a microphone for voice chat (optional).

Categories: Sports

Date: December 27, 2019

Developer: Mattew Ota - Director, Crystal Pug

About developer: After working at other large games companies for many years, Matthew took th ... Read more



App URL in iTunes
App URL in Google Play


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