245 The One Currency To Rule Them All

A social game with one (or less) type of currency.

So many social games out right now are entirely based around having multiple “currencies” as a method for game design, typically gained through delayed interaction. What if we designed social games with both fun and monetization in mind? Is there no balance? Is the introduction of monetization into a game system automatically make it a mindless cooldown-checker?

If you have one currency, say gold, and I can buy that gold for real money, though in-app purchases, then that’s fine. That’s just an option for people who want to play quicker. Typically the game design (or hopefully) isn’t too affected by this, or doesn’t surround around these purchases.

Once a second currency is introduced, and specifically when I can convert between currencies (or have to buy one currency to buy another!?), then something has gone terribly wrong.

I’m not saying that all of these games are inherently bad, but simply that this type of design doesn’t encourage meaningful and long-term interaction. It’s a way for the game to get in, grab money from the player, and slip away unnoticed and onto the digital pile of never-play-that-agains.

[ Today I Was Playing: Card Hunter ]

September 2, 2015

#game-opinion, #social-game