0 to 32 million users: Dice With Buddies’ ingredients for success by Justin Stofle


Original post here

One of my favorite games, unsurprisingly, is one of my own,Dice With Buddies.  Dice is one of my favorites not because of how successful it is, or that I made it, but rather how it’s a great modern adaptation to a classic game.

One of the many aspects that make up a great game, aside from gameplay, is how it brings people together. The inspiration for Dice with Buddies came after I playedWords with Friends. I enjoyed the async turn based game format, however I didn’t enjoy the spelling aspect. I thought that other games I enjoyed as a child would work well in this format and chose Yahtzee, as it was a game I loved playing with my family.

Some of my first users were friends and family members, and we would play several dice games together throughout the course of the week. It was fun because I normally didn’t talk to some of them on a regular basis and I felt like we were connecting through the game. I would use the in game messaging system to chat with them while we played. I spent a lot of time making chat feel as though you were having a normal sms conversation. Because of this, the chatting experience is very natural and feels more like a conversation around a game. It has helped people make new friends as well as strengthen existing relationships. The concept of togetherness is something that great games do well.

We released the game without a lot of bells and whistles, and slowly added new features as time went on. I wanted to introduce as little friction as possible between starting the game for the first time and getting into your first match. For this reason the first few versions of the game did not come with a tutorial. A brief tutorial was later added, after we discovered that a surprisingly large number of people had never played Yahtzee. As an avid dice player, I wanted to only include features to the game that I found useful or fun. This decision has always resonated well within the community, as the features we add always end up enhancing the game.

Scopely focuses on building great gameplay, rather than ways to increase monetization.  I want your 1000th turn to be more exciting than your 1st turn.  Because of this we see users playing Dice with Buddies significantly longer than any other game we have made, and longer than most games in the mobile space. We know that if you build an amazing product it will sell itself.