JoyPac | SetSnail

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SetSnail: Helping a small studio scale up and monetize their award-winning game

Denmark-based creative studio SetSnail had been self-publishing fresh, original games. But making good games only takes you so far – eventually you need to scale them up and find the right monetization model to make it profitable.

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Oddman

SetSnail

About the studio

SetSnail is a creative studio located in Denmark.

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We are really good at coming up with creative, fresh takes on gameplay. That’s our biggest strength. But it’s hard to scale up a game – it’s one of the biggest challenges. We’re good at making games, but we don’t have a team that can help in scaling games and work on the analytics part.” Casper, Founder, SetSnail

So SetSnail partnered up with us at JoyPac. With our help, SetSnail increased its revenue, improved their game and learned a lot in the process.

Here’s how it happened.

SetSnail’s self-published title, Oddman, was clearly a good game. But it had lots of untapped potential

Oddman picked up the award for ‘best quick gameplay’ at the IMGA awards and was featured as ‘Android game of the week’ on AndroidCentral. It was hailed as fun, humourous, and a fresh new take on a fighting game genre. But even though it was already performing well, they knew that it could get to a much higher level.

Before we joined with joypac we had gameplay that performed well. But we didn’t have the monetization part. We had no placements for ads, we weren’t doing global distribution or running UA and didn’t have money to run large ad campaigns. We relied on people just finding our games organically through featuring. Christoffer, Developer at SetSnail

Without proper analytics, monetization, and global publication, we knew Oddman was nowhere near reaching its full potential.

Oddman 4phones

We set about testing and optimizing the game’s appeal before a big relaunch

With the market already overflowing with mobile games, fun gameplay alone isn’t enough to make a game stand out. You have to get scientific. So we decided to break the game down to its core and find out what was truly resonating with players.

We did six large updates. We ran different versions of the game with some fundamental gameplay changes – and looked for boosts in the game’s metrics. After each new version of the game, we did a full-scale user acquisition round and gradually learned what was most appealing to players.

It soon became very clear what worked and what didn’t. With enough testing, we saw a steady increase in all the metrics.

We like to test our games a lot, but when we do it on our own, we test on a small number of people. JoyPac scaled up this number a lot in a short space of time. Soon we were testing a lot of updates on a lot of people and through that we got much better metrics flowing in. Casper

What we did to Oddman before the relaunch

  • We brought scaling and production expertise to the game launch.
  • We co-developed the game for different markets to make it appealing across the globe – removing unnecessary parts of the game and improving the gameplay.
  • We funded extra content for the game – making the gameplay deeper and more substantial to increase retention rates.
  • We found ways to include ad placements in the game without ruining the gameplay.
  • We used data analytics to find the right audience, set up targeted campaigns, and optimized Oddman for every necessary app store.

We brought transparency to SetSnail’s publishing process

SetSnail had worked with publishers before. But they found communication to be a problem. Too often, other publishers would tell them roughly what they were doing to promote their games but were reluctant to give specific details.

At JoyPac, we like to combine the open and communicative style of western publishers with the specialized operations and marketing know-how needed to make it big in Eastern and Western markets.

So, as we always do, we kept SetSnail fully updated on the whole process of testing, preparing the global launch, analyzing data, promoting and monetizing their game.

JoyPac brings this big transparency. Other publishers, with which we have been working over the years, used to say that they don’t know what’s going on. But with JoyPac, we know about the campaigns they’re doing, how they’re finding users, and it just helps us to design a better game because we’re not in the dark. Christoffer

So what was it like working with JoyPac?

To answer this question, we’ll hand over to Casper and Christoffer:

It’s been a pleasure to work with a company with an open approach – where we got to learn a lot about user acquisition and how publishing works in general. We really got valuable insight into the publishing world. That’s what makes a better game. We’d defintely recommend JoyPac to other studios. Self-publishing a game globally is a big risk, as you can easily get lost in the sea of all the games out there. Having someone behind you to help you scale your game is a huge advantage in the mobile game market. Casper
Working with publishers can be frightening as an indie developer, because often you’re left in the dark. You don’t know what’s going on – normally you just submit the updates and talk with a robot. But with JoyPac we knew what was going on, how the tests were doing, how the game was performing, and that just made us more comfortable in the entire process. Christoffer