Lodsys LLC Lawsuit of Mobile Game Developers

On the website, http://www.toucharcade.com, I read an article that talked about a company called Lodsys LLC suing various mobile game developers over infringement of several patents. The article stated that the lawsuit is based on infringement on interactive chat and other features of the company. I found it shocking that the lawsuit was mounted against dozens of mobile game developers, but I realize the unfortunate circumstances that can happen to companies like Lodsys LLC.

You might recall back in mid-2011 when a company called Lodsys LLC filed legal suit against a number of game and app development companies claiming that the use of in-app purchases and/or paid upgrade systems in those companies’ apps infringed on patents owned by Lodsys. After sending out threatening letters to a number of these smaller – sometimes just one or two person – development teams, Lodsys went all in and added some of gaming’s biggest players to their suit, including Atari, Electronic Arts, Rovio, Square Enix and Take-Two Interactive. To finish reading Lodsys Sues a New Batch of Mobile Game Developers Including Gameloft, Backflip Studios, and Disney click here.

The use of patent trolling seems to be harming companies because they are being forced to license with the companies in order to use the patents. I feel this article did a great job explaining the reason behind the lawsuit and I understand how patent trolling can be damaging to companies.


How Many Mobile Game Developers Are There?

On the website, http://www.seekomega.com, an article was written describing the Top Twenty-five Hottest Mobile Game Developers. The article poses the following question: how many mobile game developers are there?

The twenty-five big game developers included: Gameloft, EA Mobile, BigFish Games, and Disney Mobile. It makes a lot of sense that the mobile gaming industry is rising because new mobile devices are coming out each year. The games are cheap so people are more likely to buy them just to try them out.

The article noted that sales of mobile games are rising over large console video games and even the movie industry. I can only wonder how many mobile game developers are there going to be in the future as the industry continues to grow. I’m guessing big numbers for sure.

mobile game developers 2

HTML5 Mobile Game Development for Beginners

Check out this video explaining HTML5 Mobile Game Development for Beginners because it shares an easy to understand guide for using HTML5 to create mobile games.

The video explains a bit about the program, LimeJS, and why it’s a powerful and efficient tool to create mobile games with. It also goes into GIT, SVN, and Python 2.6 and why they are needed.

I’m posting it here on the blog because I think it does a good job describing the course requirements and the step by step guide to downloading programs, framework, and creating games. So give it a watch and see how long it takes for you to make your first mobile game. 🙂

Mobile Game Development Market

On the website, www.thetechlabz.com, I reviewed an article explaining why the mobile game development market is doing so much better than console games. It’s definitely worth the read so I included the link to give you a chance to check it out.

The crux of it was that since people carry around their mobile devices wherever they go they obviously have more opportunities to access their games from those same mobile devices. Plus most mobile games only cost a dollar so consumers are more likely to purchase one given the low price point.

The article also provides several charts that show mobile games are on the rise.

Make no mistake about it, the mobile game development market is a great investment for companies.

HTML5 App Development

On the website, http://www.linuxfoundation.org, I read an article that discussed HTML5 app development for various mobile devices. It went over the issue developers have when they construct an operating system for electronic devices. It detailed HTML5’s compatibility with different web browsers and how it is used as a standard format for different devices.

The article did a good job elaborating on the future of HTML5 app development and the difficulties faced by companies that are trying to build a secure, strong system. The article should help you understand the difficulty of developing a new, efficient system based on mixing old software and finding people who understand the program enough to help develop it in the future.

The Ten-Page Design Document Sample

This is from the appendixes of Level Up (highly recommend that you buy it).  I will be using this template for my next game design project.


Unlike the one-pager, which should be kept to one page, the ten-pager is more a set of guidelines than a strict policy.  It’s more of a “ten-pointer” than a ten-pager, but feel free to dedicate a page to a topic. What’s important is that all the broad strokes of information are included and the document is accessible and exciting to read. The foundation of this document will turn into your pitch and GDD.


Page 1: Title Page

Include a graphic if possible, a title (preferably a logo) and your contact information, target platform, target audience, target rating, and expected shipping date.


Page 2: Story and Gameplay

Page 2 should include a few short paragraphs about the story (beginning, middle, and ending … or at least a cliffhanger) mentioning the setting, the characters, and the conflict. Gameplay description should give a brief idea of the flow of the game—break it into stages or bullet points if its easier to convey info that way.


Page 3: Game Flow

How does the player grow as the challenges increase? How does this tie into the story? Briefly describe how these systems will work (experience points, money, score, collectibles) and what the player gains as they grow (new abilities, weapons, additional moves, unlockables).


Page 4: Character(s) and Controls

Who does the player control? What is his/her/its story? What can they do that is unique/special to this game? Can the player do several types of activities? (Driving, shooting, and so on.) Does the player ever change characters? What is the difference in play?

Show control mapping highlighting some of the special/unique moves to this product. Include image of SKU’s controller for reference.


Page 5: Main Gameplay Concepts and Platform Specific Features

What kind of play does the player engage in? What genres are they? (Driving, shooting, platform, and so on.) How is the sequence of play broken up? (Levels? Rounds? Story chapters?) If there are multiple minigames, list them out by name and give short descriptions. If there are specific cool gameplay scenarios, list them. USPs from the concept overview should be included and briefly detailed here. Diagrams are to illustrate game concepts.

What game features are unique and capitalize on the platform’s hardware? (Hard drive, touch screen, multiple screen, memory card, and so on.) Provide examples.


Page 6: Game World

Where does the gameplay take place? List the environments the player will visit with short descriptions. How do they tie into the story? What mood is being evoked in each world? How are they connected? (Linear or hub-style navigation?) Include a simple flow diagram of how the player would navigate the world.


Page 7: Interface

How does the player navigate the shell of the game? What mood is evoked with the interface screens? What music is used? Include a simple flow diagram of how the player will navigate the interface.


Page 8: Mechanics and Power-ups

Gameplay mechanics. What unique mechanics are in the game? How do they relate to the player’s actions? How will they be used in the environment?

Power-ups. If applicable, what kind of power-ups/collectibles can the player collect? What are the benefits of collecting them? Can they be used to buy items, abilities, and so on?


Page 9: Enemies and Bosses

Enemies. If applicable, what kind of enemies does the player face? What kind of cool attacks do they have? Describe the enemy Al. What makes them unique?

Bosses. If applicable, what kind of boss characters does the player face? What environments do they appear in? How does the player defeat them? What does the player get for defeating them?


Page 10: Cutscenes, Bonus Material, and Comps

How are the cutscenes going to be presented? When do they appear; in between levels? At the beginning and end of the game? What format have they been created in? (CG? Flash? Puppet show?)

What material will the player be able to unlock? What incentive is there for the player to play again?

What other games will be your competition upon market


One Page Game Design Document Sample

This is from the appendixes of Level Up (highly recommend that you buy it).  I will be using this template for my next game design project.

Farm Wars (game title) concept overview

XBOX LIVE/WII WARE/PS3 Download (Game platform)

Target Age: 15-21 (target audience)

Rating: E10 Game Summary: Old MacDonald has a farm… and those animals are fed up! Tired of being exploited, the animals build cybernetic death armor and attack! Farmer MacDonald must fight frenzied waves of killer cows, sinister sheep and crazed chickens to protect his produce. Sell your crops to upgrade the farm and buy weapons! Farm as well as you fight, otherwise you’ll “buy the farm!” (include the beginning, middle and end of the game story, give an indication of the game play style, the player’s objectives and elements. Keep it short and sweet.)


Game Outline: Players create and maintain a basic farm, plants and cares for crops during the Farming Round. Enemies attack during the Battle Round. Harvest and sell remaining produce during the Selling Round. Use profits to buy new seed, rebuild your farm and upgrade your weapon in the Buying Round. After a Season (4 sets of 4 rounds), the player fights a boss to progress to the next Season. Later seasons will feature weather that will affect farming, selling and battle rounds. (Don’t go into great detail, but it needs to be more in-depth than a summary.)

USP (Unique Selling Points)

• RTS action meets farming simulation!

• Build and breed unique farm, weapons and crops. Hundreds of combinations!

• Over 50 weapons from a simple hoe to the DeathBringer3000!!

• Fight hordes of enemies and bosses!

• Multiple game endings based on player’s performance.

• Multiplayer “Barnyard Brawl” battle mode.

(Use USPs to highlight cool and unique features—game play style, game modes, single or multiplayer, technology innovations, cool features. There shouldn’t be more than 5-7 of these) Similar competitive products: Tower Defense, Harvest Moon series, Lock’s Quest

Choose competitive products that are successful, recent or very well known – preferably all


Finished Level Up!

Level Up! The Guide to Great Video Game Design


If you have ever looked into video game design you probably already know there are many books on the subject. Dry, technical, boring books that truly are filled with great information but who wants to read it? Scott Rogers has turned this image on its proverbial head with his Level Up! The Guide to Great Video Game Design. From the introduction to the last page you will find humor, humility and fun. (Of course, the basic concepts of video game design too!)


While the humor is great fun and the illustrations (his own little cartoons) are great, the best thing about this book is the fact that it deals with the entire process of creating great video games from a man who has actually done precisely that. Scott Rogers has over 16 years in the video game industry and what is more, he loves playing them as well. This book actually got its start as a small basic guide he passed around at work, a room full of developers.


Whether you are a seasoned developer or brand new to the system, Level Up, is a book for you. Inside you will learn everything you need to know about great video game design, while at the same time gaining an understanding of how this is a massive team effort. Scott has really put together a fantastic tool for just about anyone, and it is so much fun to read! Perhaps the most telling of all is another review you can find from Scott’s former boss who paid full price for the book because he believed in Scott Rogers and that the information contained inside would be beneficial to his career. How many of your ex-bosses would do that?

Level Up on Amazon