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PocketGamer.biz Week That Was: PR tips, media corruption and location-based overload

The past 7 days in bite-sized portions
Product: PocketGamer.biz | Publisher: Steel Media Ltd | Format: Android, Blackberry, iPhone, PG.Biz, iPad, Windows Phone, Windows 8
PocketGamer.biz Windows 8, thumbnail 1
At the start of 2012, PocketGamer.biz ran a series of interviews with location-based game developers.

This week, we've revisited the topic, canvassing another set of location-based studios for their assessments of the current state of the genre.

Massive Damage CEO Ken Seto believes that "we're only scratching the surface in terms of how we can effectively use location."

However, location-based gaming is fairly unique in that it has to ask its players for permission to activate its most compelling feature. This is a significant hurdle, but one that's slowly being overcome, according to Seto.

"People are less hesitant to use location-based games and apps. So many other apps are using location, that it's become common-place to see that 'use your location' prompt, and people are now a lot more savvy and accepting."

Red Robot Labs' chief product officer Pete Hawley agreed.

"I think for a location game to hit true mass market, top grossing iOS standards, it would have to be a very simple, delightful game that removed any fears around revealing your location to publishers or other players. "

"That day will come," he concluded. But enough thinking of the future – let's turn our gaze to the past instead, as we move on to our bite-sized overview of the last seven days' worth of news.

Platform wars
  • RIM schedules a series of worldwide BlackBerry 10 'launch events' for 30 January 2013. 
  • Mere weeks after the global launch of Windows 8, the head of Microsoft's Windows division Steven Sinofsky announces he's leaving the company
  • Due to a trademark claim from a German board game company, Apple is reportedly asking the creators of any iOS app with the word 'Memory' in its title to either rename their app or pull it from the Store. 
  • GREE adds HTML5 compatibility to its platform, announcing it will roll out the functionality via an open beta set to start in November 2012. 
  • Unity Technologies officially launches the latest version of its multiplatform games engine – Unity 4.0
User acquisition
  • Despite reports of an Apple crackdown on incentivised installs, Tapjoy CEO Mihir Shah insists this isn't the case, claiming that Apple "approves hundreds of apps that integrate and leverage Tapjoy" each week... 
  • But one of Tapjoy's key partners, Glu Mobile, is clearly under the impression that this crackdown is very much in effect, and expects to lose around $7 million a year as a result. 
  • Kontagent announces that its suite of intelligence tools will enable mobile developers to track their campaigns through Facebook's mobile app install ads. 
Industry voices
Location-based gaming week
The Social Gaming Summit and the Smartphone & Tablet Gaming Summit 2012
  • Speaking at the Social Gaming Summit 2012, Facebook's Owen O'Donoghue explains that the platform's future gaming growth will be defined by mobile
  • Gamesbrief founder Nicholas Lovell argues that developers need to "find the fun," and that virality is dead and buried
  • Down the hall at the Smartphone & Tablet Games Summit 2012, an industry panel debates the current state of games on HTML5, and reach some wildly different conclusions. 
  • Later, as part of a panel discussion multi-platform monetisation, Koolbit CEO Gerard Cunningham declares that the 'golden age' of low-cost user acquisition is over
To catch up on all of PocketGamer.biz's coverage from these co-located events, simply click through for The Social Games Summit and the Smartphone & Tablet Gaming Summit.

Reviewer photo
James Nouch 17 November 2012
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