Top 5 Features Your Next Football Game Must Have
by Dylan Moran
Football game giants like Pro Evolution Soccer, Football Manager and FIFA have been offering deeply collaborative and competitive features to its players that leave them no other option than sticking around every time they think of video games.
With these leaders in market, developing a new football game that captures even a small set of their audience can be a big challenge.
Here are the top 5 things you must consider that other popular games have been using to attract new players and enhance the gaming experience of existing players.
Use Real-world Data
It is not a new concept to enhance the Football Gaming Experience. But it had been in and out of fashion at different times. Football Manager, FIFA Soccer, Championship Manager for example, are some games that are using real-world data for many years and making the games feel more real. They generally push the data to the game via regular timely updates.
Such data is readily available at various sources for developers to pick, but the challenging part could be its integration into the game. This is because it requires a lot of processing in order to make the raw data consumable by the game.
If you are developing your game using a game engine, you might get some help with this. For example, GameSparks provides a SFTP interface for ingesting data into their platform, which then scans and uploads the files without any delay.
Make your game more social – Add Social Leaderboards
Making a game socially active does not mean simply picking couple of cursory social mechanics and dropping them into the game at the end. This approach often lacks the required k-factor that gives it the potential of going viral. The social features should rather be designed and integrated into the core game play.
Social leaderboard is one of such social features that bring players together to play and enhance the potential of game to go viral while retaining the interest of its players.
Leaderboards appeal directly to the players to compete with their friends online. They present a sophisticated performance challenge that provokes more interest and effort in scoring higher than other friend players. Just make sure the social leaderboards you create are sliced and diced by more dynamic set of attributes in order to derive the competitive reaction of the players. For example, adding Geo-location, age group, nationality, favorite football team etc.
Add a betting option like real football game
Just like in the real-world, football fans have been betting on video game matches as well. Some do it for their personal ability to win the game while others like to watch football games of their friends and place a bet on the outcome.
This feature is not very common even in the popular football games, so you can take the advantage and develop a fascinating experience for your players. But considering it is not very common, you may have to add a detailed guide about how to bet on sports video games in order to let your players enjoy the feature to the fullest.
Betting on the outcomes of football video games could be way more fun and exciting that playing slots, video poker, or table games. The multiplayer element of such a socially active video game, would be less encouragement for gamble but more for the players to develop their skills in the game and win more.
Events can also be a very interesting feature for a football video game. It lets the players schedule their social activity like having tournaments or other multi-player game sessions. Events are also appealing because of getting players come together and complete something by a date in the future. A reminder feature can also be integrated to let players remember the set fixed time when everyone has to play.
The nature of events can however be very dependent on the core game play. For example, some games let players assign targets to groups of friends so that the complete group is encouraged as a group, to engage in the game.
Last on the list of top 5 features for enhancing a football game experience is Gifting.
Gifting allows the players to exchange virtual items with their friends while also improving their social interaction and relations. Sending lives, in-game virtual items, rewards or credit to friends can be effective for certain player types. As a developer, it should be your main objective to try and find out more ways of getting these established networks of friends to engage with each other while playing the game. Such a social ability is the key to the popularity of any video game be it on console, PC or mobile.（source：gamasutra）