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GDC: World Tour of Mobile Games

GDC-WTMultiPlayerEx.jpgGameSpot) and David Collier (NAMCO), go through 40 of the crÈme de la crÈme of mobile games from all over the world in fewer minutes than the number of mobile games discussed. Organized by genre, the mobile gaming duo showcased their picks and justifications, while highlighting trends in creative development.

More after the jump…

The genre types are: Action Games, Location Games, Adventure RPG, Lite Games, Racy Anime Games, Tycoon, Puzzle, Platform, Sports, Simulation, Virtual Life, and Other. Some of these genres are self explanatory (Action Games).


Location Games take place in a specific location. These types of games already have some sequels due to popularity, like Undercover 2 and Botfighters 2. Lite Games are mostly popular outside of the U.S. market and does not involve very in depth gaming like some of the other genres. The Tycoon genre is primarily popular in Korea. It involves heavy multitasking. For example, the Fish Cake Tycoon is a game in which you are a fish cake vendor. As you cook, you need to check on your food. As the fish gets brown, they need to be flipped (because burnt food is gross!!). As you're cooking, you need to constantly check for customers as well. The game seems rather intense and requires the ability to handle multiple tasks. It's a shame it never hit it big outside of Korea. Platform games, just in case you weren't sure, are games, like Prince of Persia or Metal Gear 2, which were initially launched for consoles but are later made available for mobiles. Simulation games emulate actions that you can do in real life. An example of a simulation game is Bass Master: Legendary Lunker, where you fish for bass. It even vibrates if you've closed your phone while playing and a fish has latched onto your bait. Virtual Life Games also allow you to do things that are similar in real life. Aquarium allows you to raise fish as pets, breed them, and even trade them, all on your mobile phone. The Other category are just things that the duo found interesting, but were baffled as to where to put it.


One of the items they found interesting is the Stamkey. It's a stamp that you open up and creates a 2D barcode that can be scanned by a mobile phone. The data received from the barcode is personal information, which is then stored in the mobile.


They say that people are placing these 2D barcodes on business cards. But really the possibilities are endless. Just think, no more standing around dictating digits for another for punch in their phone or the expected call back for proper digit exchange.

So, rather than just rambling on and on, some of the trends that were brought up were that with the introduction of flat rate prices for downloading packages, mobile gaming is more accessible in those markets. It allows for users to download clips of game play and watch them on their mobile phone before downloading the actual game. Mobile games are also more 3D.


They're utilizing some rather interesting interfaces. For example the game, Ninja Battle TV, has the playing field rotate on the screen.


Another trend is that mobile games are incorporating multiple players, so that you can destroy each other while waiting for food or the bus. There is really a lot of interesting stuff going on in the mobile game industry, (more than I can mention or show you in this post) which is why you should keep your eyes open for what's going on in that industry and how people are using them.


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