What is mobile game design?
Step one of mobile game design is picking a genre to define how players interact with your game. Then you take your idea and create a working prototype for testing and iteration. Some devs start with pen and paper, but eventually, your plans should start taking shape in a mobile game engine like Unity.
It’s risky to spend too much time dreaming up features or working on art that won’t make it into the final product. Experiment with gameplay as soon as possible to identify your core gameplay loop.
Unity has many tools to help you start prototyping, even if you’re new to mobile game development. Use ProBuilder to design levels and visual scripting to create basic game logic without coding. The Unity Asset Store is invaluable for prototyping – pick up prebuilt 3D assets and code modules to jumpstart development, and get going.
Visuals are crucial for mobile game design – with so many titles out there, you need your graphics to stand out. Many developers use Unity to create beautiful 3D games, but 75% of top mobile games feature primarily 2D visuals, which offer solid performance on Android and iOS and translate well across devices.
Looking to create higher-end visuals that don’t impact performance? The Universal Render Pipeline, or URP, is a scriptable render pipeline for creating stunning mobile graphics.
Ensuring your game is as performant as it is visually appealing is a key tenet of good mobile game design. If your game runs slowly, drains the battery, takes up too much memory, or crashes constantly, players will just delete it and move on. To keep players invested, you must optimize your game for mobile
Unity has many different profiling tools to help you keep performance issues to a minimum, including Device Simulator, Input System, Memory Analyzer, Profile Analyzer, the Universal Render Pipeline (URP), and more.
Creating games for mobile isn’t like designing for consoles. You have thousands of devices to consider, and you need to test on as many as you can to ensure you can deliver your game to the widest possible audience. Unity’s multiplatform capabilities can help you reach billions of players.
Unity simplifies multiplatform development. Unity’s package ecosystem lets you tailor the engine to your needs, and we offer a mobile-friendly render pipeline, URP, that allows you to create graphics that scale across many different devices. Give iOS and Android users the best possible experience without compromising your vision.
Successful mobile game studios consider advertising and monetization strategy early in the game design process, to make sure they are seamless, unobtrusive, and don’t stand in the way of the players’ enjoyment. Some develop premium mobile game apps requiring a one-time purchase, while others pursue a freemium model with in-app purchases.
Whatever avenue you choose, Unity can help you land on a monetization strategy that aligns with your vision and the desires of your growing player base. Services like Unity Ads, Unity In-App-Purchases, and Unity Economy can help make your game profitable so you can continue providing stellar content.
The games-as-a-service model is here to stay, and mobile platforms are leading the charge. Game development doesn’t stop at launch – for many mobile games, that’s where the journey begins.
More than just a game engine, Unity has a variety of products and services to help you run your LiveOps and make your game thrive. Looking to bring players together? Host and manage multiplayer sessions with Multiplayer services. Aiming for a secure experience? Manage player data and authentication with our backend tools. Seeking a better understanding of your audience? Unity Analytics can give you granular insight into their behavior so you know which knobs to tweak to keep them in the game.