Saying you’re a social game versus being a social game

08 March 2018

When you read a random article about how to make a quality casual game, the advice is always the same: make it a social game. The fact that social game is a buzzword now tells us it became an abstract term. You have to do it, but no one really knows how exactly. ‘Make sure your players can invite their friends’ is one of those returning tips. Everyone will agree on that. But how can I do that?

OSM’s mission was the following for a long time: “We want to be the best social football manager in the world”. And we were convinced we were. OSM is a great game to play with friends or total strangers at the other end of the world. It’s called Online Soccer Manager for a reason. Still, we wanted to do better.

How do we make a real social game out of OSM? We decided that ‘fun to play online with friends’ wasn’t good enough anymore. It should be an absolute necessity to play with someone else in OSM. Not in the sense of gifting each other lives like Candy Crush does, but help one another in the core of the game. Finding a way to do this was difficult, time invasive and most importantly, very cool. So what happened? The ideal feature to get this done was already thought of by our community of experienced players!

This feature was called Crews and fulfilled the need of experienced players to play OSM in groups with and against each other. The challenge became to facilitate this for all of our players and to build this feature for our native iOS and Android apps. A feature that had to be easy to play and challenging at the same time. A feature that had to be nice and beautiful. Innovative and familiar. And of course, always together.

This process resulted in releasing Crews for a part of our players on Monday March 5. Which part? That was an easy pick, our most loyal community: the Netherlands. After a beta period where enthusiasts could already play the feature (and we used it to collect valuable feedback), we had the confidence to ship our newest feature to our players. That’s how Gamebasics took the next step in being an actual social game.


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