‘Makeup Kit Color Mixing’ is the second hit game that solo-game developer Alex Petrus, CEO of Fontes Sp. z o.o., published with CrazyLabs. What makes this game stand out is that the game idea came from CrazyLabs’ Creative Ideation Team. This superstar team helps you generate (and even provide you with) proven successful game ideas based on our internal research.
This game is highly profitable and enjoyed top ranks on the leading gaming charts for approximately three months. Below, you’ll learn actionable tips for launching a top-chart game according to Moria Goldstein Toren, CrazyLabs’ VP of Creative & Product Design, Sky Persin, Senior Creative Manager, Hila Chechik, Senior Publishing Manager, and Alex Petrus.
How Was The Game Idea Born?
Makeup Kit Color Mixing is a simulation game with a color mixing mechanic, where players select the gradient colors (based on illustrations) and then blend the palates to create eyeshadow palettes.
The game idea came from CrazyLabs’ Creative Ideation Team, driven by meticulous internal research and unparalleled creativity. Additionally, our Market Research team noticed that color themes were trending and were gaining significant traction at the time, so we knew we were in the right place.
The inspiration for the game was this TikTok video where people create eyeshadow palettes based on Disney or cartoon characters and other trending image illustrations.
The Creative Ideation Team noticed this challenge early on and conducted a CPI test that showed promising results of $0.17. Then the idea was given to Alex to continue building out. We worked very closely to perfect the game foundations. We guided him on what the game should look like, the game’s core and first build, and how to create and maintain an element of fun within the game. Alex is an incredible partner and created the first build within 20 days!
Repetitive mechanic & a beautiful end result – The winning formula behind this hit game was integrating a repetitive mechanic, where you can play the same level again and again and each time, the outcome will be different and beautiful (i.e., the eyeshadow pallets each time displayed different colors from the previous level).
This recipe for success was also applied to Tie Dye (a simulation game by CrazyLabs with over 150 million downloads), which includes the repetitive task of tie-dying clothing to create new beautiful designs after each game played.
How to understand whether you’re on to something (trend) – When looking at social media for trends, videos that have a massive number of views aren’t necessarily the answer (as you might be too late to the viral trend).
The idea is to look for new concepts that capture your attention and make you watch the whole thing and dig into the concept further. With Makeup Kit it was incredibly satisfying to ‘color’ the eyeshadow palettes, although, at the time, these videos barely had any views.
Gamify trends (but stay as close as possible to the trend) – The idea here is to gamify a booming trend, however, it needs to be as close as possible to the real thing, such that there’s no room for interpretation. With Makeup Kit, we created a game, which was based entirely on a TikTok challenge, and we didn’t add anything else to it.
We brought the trend to life and captured it in a hyper-casual game.
Every trend can be gamified – Keep your eyes and ears to the ground for new trends, which are mainly discovered on TikTok and Youtube. Any video on social media can be gamified.
Tactics to improve retention – We employed a combination of the below strategies to increase Day 1 to a whopping 59% and the first playtime of 47 minutes:
- Upgrades & unlocks – After every few levels, the player was able to unlock new palates which featured new colors, palate shapes (i.e., squares, flower shaped, etc.), and glitter.
- Optimizing levels – We added a few new levels, where each level shows a different illustration for the player to create color palettes for the eyeshadow. Next, we reviewed which levels were performing best, and as such, we added illustrations in the same category as the best-performing ones. For example, if the princess cartoons were performing very well, we created more levels with different types of princess cartoon characters.
- Color palette title – Retention increased when we added the color titles (i.e., serenade, petite orchid, mandy) onto the palettes as seen below.
“The driving force behind Makeup Kit’s stunning success was CrazyLabs’ initial strong trend-based idea, and I’m very thankful for Crazylabs giving me this idea.
Their creative team discovered this makeup trend, and we worked very fast to stay first. CrazyLabs’ provided me with very close support and close cooperation from different teams -first the publishing team, then the product and design team, marketing team, analytics, and QA – and all of these teams worked fast and efficiently to make this hit game”.Alex Petrus
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