Comics Bob and Co. or Aerobatics of Cave Animation [Case Study]
The hyper casual party continues in the gaming segment. According to Sensor Tower, downloads for hyper casual games have grown from 7 billion to nearly 12 billion since 2020, and ad revenues have exceeded $ 3 billion. It is no wonder that this niche remains incredibly important for all market players and very competitive for everyone who wants to get into the gaming segment: it is becoming more and more difficult to create something interesting and standout. But SayGames are doing well. To date, hyper casual games publisher SayGames has released over 40 games with 2+ billion downloads worldwide. Every game they release has a high rating and tens of thousands of comments. The bar is high, so every new game should be flawless both in terms of addictive gameplay and eye-catching visual content. SayGames has selected renowned experts in game animation to add some liveliness to its new arcade puzzle game Comics Bob with non-trivial choice-based gameplay. And our team gladly agreed to help. GOAL CHALLENGE TEAM COMPOSITION Development of original heroes’ movements for visualization of different scenarios Work out 2D animation of the main and minor characters for different scenarios BizDev managerProject managerLead 2D animator2D animators Comics Bob is a funny, colorful and very addicting arcade puzzle game in which players will act on behalf of Bob the caveman and his girlfriend Jess who constantly find themselves in various difficult situations. Due to their modest intellectual abilities, heroes cannot find the best way out on their own, so the players will have to use their brain resources to help them handle circumstances that that are quite strange at times. Bob looking for a space dog A key feature of the game is humor, which makes even the wrong choice look very funny. Simple controls, relaxed atmosphere, colorful graphics and a humorous presentation can easily cheer up gamers of any age. There are now 62 episodes in the game: the final ones are scheduled for the near future. Players note the freshness of the idea and the positive atmosphere, regret that the game ends too quickly and say that they want more. Each episode has 2 or 3 checkpoints where the player must make a choice that will affect whether Bob or his girlfriend can advance further. The choice is sometimes quite unclear, and in case of failure, you will have to start the level again. But even the wrong scenarios are drawn so amusingly that the error does not cause any negative reaction. Moreover, many players deliberately choose the obviously absurd option in order to see what happens. Jess trying to fix a vase The deadline was quite tough: despite the fact that the game was released back in March, the SayGames team in parallel continued to work on the next levels, which were gradually appearing in the game. Work on the episode began with a clear assignment, which contained a comic-like description of the episode’s plot and the consequences of each choice, as well as links to all the necessary art assets and icons. For our part, we could offer certain minor variations in the presentation of the animation in order to make it look more impressive or funny, but the basic concept remained unchanged. In addition, we had access to the materials of the ready-made levels, which helped us quickly adapt to the required animation style. Workflow At the initial stages of work, we prepared the animation for each checkpoint of the episode separately: it was necessary not only to implement the actions of the characters conceived according to the script, but also to comply with the general animation style of the ready-made episodes. We provided the client with animation, received feedback and, if necessary, corrected certain aspects. Then, when we got used to the desired style and the need for adjustments disappeared, it became possible to prepare the whole episode in full and provide it for the client to check. This greatly accelerated the work. The client got the opportunity to get a complete picture of the episode and evaluate how correctly and smoothly the animation was made. In addition to the main character Bob, the game includes his girlfriend, whom the player has to control at several levels, as well as several secondary characters that appear in accordance with the scenario. These are: an insidious saber-toothed tiger, constantly striving to play dirty tricks on Bob and juggle away his girlfriend, dressed up in a business suit;a multi-professional monkey whose specialization ranges from a sushi master to a medic and even a police officer;many-eyed aliens with incomprehensible intentions and creepy devices;the second cavewoman, trying to brazenly get into the relationship between Bob and his girlfriend;Mouseman – Mickey-like analogue of Batman, who comes to the rescue at the right time;and the final antagonist of the game – the giant green octopus who kidnapped Bob. Simple fauna is also enough here: a mammoth (moonlighting as a bartender in a local club), a lamb, deer, pterodactyl, snakes, fish, cat, bees, etc. While on another planet, Bob meets an adorable space dog who becomes his companion and assistant. All of these characters also required their animation approach. On average, it took us from 60 to 90 hours to create one episode, depending on whether there are 2 or 3 checkpoints with 2 choice options. Accordingly, communacation with the client of the completed work on one episode took place every one and a half to two and a half weeks. Value Delivered For 3.5 months of work, we made 12 full-length episodes, including animation of Bob and other characters. The well-coordinated work allowed us to easily fit into the required time frame and deliver a result that completely satisfied the client. At this stage, work on Comics Bob is completed: the creators have put a logical point in the narrative. The current result is impressive: an average rating of 4 in Google Play with over 105,000 ratings and comments, and 4.6 in App Store with 18,000 ratings and comments. At the same time, the company always listens to the players and quickly implements patches and updates, which, besides adding new levels, improve the gameplay and remove bugs. Conclusion Players love hyper casual entertainment products for the simplicity and addictiveness of the gameplay, fast loading, short game loop and the ability to instantly engage a bored mind with something, whether it’s a simple puzzle, a bright simulator, an intriguing arcade game or an exciting race. And our team is always happy to have a hand in the visual design of the game, which is downloaded by millions of users. Stay connected with Kevuru Games: we have many more stories to tell. And be sure to drop us a couple of lines if you understand that it is no longer possible to keep your game idea locked up – it strives for freedom. Together we will make it shine.