Whether it’s sales figures or teardowns, everyone wants to know their competition better.

This week alone I’ve been asked by several clients if I think their game will be competitive. I even had one client request that my nine year old son do a YouTube playthrough of their title, comparing it to a similar game! What I take away from all this focus on the competitive landscape is that it’s easy to get too “heads down” on your own project and lose your ability to be objective.

AC+A (adriancrook.com) clients often call on us to provide a third party evaluation of a core loop, monetization scheme, or creative approach and how it stacks up against the market. I hope this week’s Compulsion Loop games help you do just that: evaluate where you stand against some of the best.

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Dream Treats

Why Play? Dream Treats shows that a face-import feature can work on mobile. The game attempts to appeal to children and adults, with Candy Crush quality but also age verification for IAP.

Google Play App Store
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Road Riot Combat Racing

Why Play? This game is a free-to-play spin on the top-down shooter genre similar to the classic “Asteroids”, and has hit the Top 100 Overall Grossing Rankings this week. The game monetizes by selling weapon and car upgrades, as well as limiting sessions via an energy mechanic.

Google Play App Store
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NBA Escape

Why Play? After consulting with AC+A, this game released this week and received the “Best New Games” featuring by Apple. AC+A suggested adding a gacha mechanic involving NBA players, as well as re-configuring their economy around energy and player stamina. Play this game to see how AC+A can reinvigorate a game economy to take advantage of a large install base at launch.

App Store
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Minecraft: Story Mode

Why Play? At a $4.99 price tag, Telltale shows that time and again they can produce a popular, high-quality title with a name-brand IP through the episodic style of game development.

Google Play App Store
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Auctioneer

Why Play? Looking to make an affordable yet well polished game? This small burst reflex title is a perfect example, as it leverages single screen gameplay and a memorable art style to stand out against all of the low quality mobile burst games.

Google Play App Store
Compulsion Loop

CompulsionLoop is AC+A’s (adriancrook.com) weekly pursuit of providing a Featured List for those in the games industry. A look at the latest must-play apps, along with short, useful takeaways from our team of game design and product experts. If you have a game that you think your industry colleagues should try, we’d love to hear about it at games@compulsionloop.com. Don’t forget to tell us why industry insiders should be compelled to try out the game (see what we did there?).

Know a game that you think others should play? Let us know and tell us why we should play it.

Thank you for reading and we look forward to helping you discover more games that you can glean learnings from. Feel free to reply to this email or contact games@compulsionloop.com — we’re always happy to hear from you.

Have a great week!

- Adrian Crook www.adriancrook.com