Tag: mobile games

Mobile gaming revolutionized: Vulkan may be the future

New API tech from Khronos Group may improve gaming experiences on mobile devices.

A new mobile API (application programming interface) called “Vulkan” is capturing the attention of the mobile gaming industry. The new tech is being hailed for its ability to deliver superior graphic effects in smart devices. This even includes devices with lower grade hardware specifications.

Vulkan’s creators are determined to help developers design better games.

The developers behind Vulkan are the Khronos Group; an American non-profit, member-funded consortium. According to the Khronos Group official website, their goal is to create “royalty-free open standards for parallel computing, graphics and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices.”

Mobile Gaming - Mobile UserAs for Vulkan, it is a new generation graphics and compute games-focused API specification that is based on AMD’s Mantle tech. It provides high-efficiency, cross-platform access to modern GPUs utilized in an array of devices. These devices range from PCs to consoles to mobile phones and embedded platforms.

Android users may no longer need the most expensive smartphone to enjoy premium mobile gaming.

During the recent Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles, Samsung Electronics showed off its Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge smartphones. Both smartphones are the first to support the Vulkan API. Samsung teamed up with Nexon to display Nexon’s mobile game “Heroes of Incredible Tales” for the S7 series phones. It is one of the first mobile games to support the Vulkan tech.

“Vulkan’s fast performance delivers an optimal gaming experience to every player providing a 30 percent increase in average frame rate,” Samsung said. The tech has also been designed to generate better 3D graphics and will replace OpenGL. This is the existing API standard currently used in Android, Windows and Tizen operating systems.

Google also intends to support the Vulkan API in the next version of its Android OS. Currently nicknamed Android N, the operating system is expected to be launched later this year. If the upcoming upgrade of Android supports Vulkan tech, this could mean that users might not have to purchase the most expensive high-specification smartphones to play the latest mobile game titles.

By being able to produce superior 3D graphics with less system overhead on application processors in operating systems compared to OpenGL, Vulkan could revolutionize the mobile gaming industry.

Nintendo mobile game Miitomo turning out to be a bust

It seems users may already be growing bored with the video game company’s first smartphone app.

Almost two months ago, Nintendo entered the mobile gaming market, launching its first game app, Miitomo. Unsurprisingly, it was a huge success when it first hit app stores, surpassing 4 million active users in mid April and pulling in an impressive $280,000 per week for the company. Since its launch, the Nintendo mobile game has had over 10 million downloads. However, it seems to have lost momentum, and interest for the game appears to be waning, turning this somewhat social network-style game into a ghost town.

Currently, only an estimated 2.5 million users play Miitomo.

A recent study conducted by Survey Monkey Intelligence found that while the game has had 10 million downloads, not all of these players have returned to the game. In fact, according to the study, it is estimated that presently only 2.5 million users actively play it, which is a low number considering the millions of downloads the game has had.

Furthermore, the study found that when compared to two popular mobile games, King’s, Candy Crush Jelly Saga, and Supercell’s, Clash Royale, Miitomo is only played half as much per week. It also has a fairly high weekly churn rate at 48% compared to Clash Royale’s 20% rate and Candy Crush Jelly Saga’s 23%.

This is problematic for Nintendo because since the game is like a social network, the gameplay relies on users interacting with one another. Therefore, once the user-base drops, there isn’t too much that can be done to maintain interest.

The fact that this Nintendo mobile game also functions like a social app could be one of its downfalls.

One of the reasons why Miitomo may be declining so rapidly is due to the fact that it is a social app/game hybrid. Once a player’s Mii is fully customized, all that’s left for a player to do is explore little quests and play the app’s solitary games. While players can use their Mii to interact with other players, unless players want to interact with random strangers more than their friends, it likely won’t be that fun.

That said, it’s still too early to tell if Miitomo will become the Japanese gaming giant’s first mobile app blunder. Nevertheless, even if it turns out to be a bust, this Nintendo mobile game won’t be the company’s last.