Search Unity

Is spamming Play Store an option to earn?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by IamAUnityuser, Jan 22, 2020.

  1. IamAUnityuser

    IamAUnityuser

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2018
    Posts:
    1
    I published a game(1month dev time)on Play Store 6 months back which has earned $8 till now(ads and iap).
    A little dishearted, I published another game(dev time 6 days). It cashed in a total of $13 till date(had those dirty 'mobile game tactics').
    Yet another game, reskined version of my first game with 'cash tactics', earned me $9.(dev time....5 hours).
    Should I say it out, I have repeated this process to 23 games now, majority of them being clicker games. I will possibly move over to some live wallpaper apps too.

    So the question is, how far can I go on this route? Will Google ban me for spamming their store? Or this little side business IS effective?
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2020
  2. Ryiah

    Ryiah

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2012
    Posts:
    21,128
    Completely depends if this is worth your time. If it is worth your time you may as well keep at it, but if it isn't and you're hoping one of them will go viral keep in mind it's very unlikely.

    Just about every company out there is spamming the store at some interval. Rovio, the company that made Angry Birds, was releasing one game every one and a half months till they hit it big with one of them.
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2020
    vakabaka likes this.
  3. frosted

    frosted

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2014
    Posts:
    4,044
    https://www.gdcvault.com/play/1025766/1-500-Slot-Machines-Walk

    They built an automated process to reskin slot machine apps and published around 1500 to the store. Policy may have changed since then, but it should give you some ideas.

    Short answer is that, as of a couple years ago at least, you are nowhere near the limit to what you're doing. These guys had a fully automated pipe, including automated upload and naming and were publishing like 20 a day.
     
    vakabaka likes this.
  4. BrandyStarbrite

    BrandyStarbrite

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2013
    Posts:
    2,076
    Wow! Interesting.
    I've heard about that store spamming thing before. But didn't really think much about it, until I read your comment. I think there was an article, that spoke about the Angry Birds devs doing that.
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2020
  5. Murgilod

    Murgilod

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2013
    Posts:
    10,130
    They won't ban you but you shouldn't do it because the Play Store and App Store are both enough of a goddamn S***show that they don't need you crapping up the place by flooding them with more reskins.
     
  6. pagan_poetry

    pagan_poetry

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2017
    Posts:
    107
    I talked with one dev whose games on Play Store got removed by Google because of spam reason. But it wasn't spam. I mean that the dev says his games was quite different but Google didn't give a shi*. So I don't know who is right.
     
  7. Joe-Censored

    Joe-Censored

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Posts:
    11,847
    And this is why Steam charging $100 per title is a good thing...
     
  8. neginfinity

    neginfinity

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2013
    Posts:
    13,563
    It doesn't seem to work well though.

    I've seen developers spam the titles at very short intervals each being a reskin of the same game. Or just the same game. The extra fun thing is that you can't block them from showing up in your suggestion queue.
     
  9. zombiegorilla

    zombiegorilla

    Moderator

    Joined:
    May 8, 2012
    Posts:
    9,051
    Probably both are right. Google is a fustercluck, always has been. We have had games that have been on Play for a year, suddenly rejected for no valid reason. Then after contacting Google, they couldn't find a reason either so reactivated. We had a game rejected once because the Google tester forgot to wipe the testing device after installing a custom keyboard app that broke our game. It can be a complete crap shoot.
     
    Ryiah and MadeFromPolygons like this.
  10. SparrowGS

    SparrowGS

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2017
    Posts:
    2,536
    Here's some first hand experience.. (not me)
     
  11. Joe-Censored

    Joe-Censored

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Posts:
    11,847
    Correct, but the problem on the Google Play Store is orders of magnitude worse.
     
  12. JohnnyA

    JohnnyA

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2010
    Posts:
    5,041
    I think the key piece missing here is that you need to be gathering data, testing markets and refining your concepts. Each new game or re-skin should have a purpose.

    So if a game makes $10 from 100 downloads well that's not a bad starting point. 10c per user is far less than you need for paid user acquisition, but it isn't a bad return. If that was the case then the next step might me to try to get more downloads by taking the same game concept and do some re-skins.

    Lets say its a generic farming game. Maybe you re-skin it to be be dragon farming attacking a fantasy angle, maybe you re-skin it to be a wacky cat farming game set in space. Attacking different angles will give you insight in to what people are looking for.

    Let say those both fail, maybe you can dig deeper, in to realistic farming. Same or very similar skin, with more complexity. More factors to balance, more items to acquire, more complexity to manage. Now maybe you get $50 from 5,000 downloads. Maybe the analytics say people are playing for quite some time, but just not using IAP. So start tweaking this game, trying to increase returns.

    Now do another re-skin with more realistic graphics, maybe this look will appeal more to 'simulator' crowd. Make the game harder (taking learning's from tweaking the original game above). Now you get your new slough of users, they are playing longer and paying more and you have a game that makes $4000 from 20,000 downloads.

    This may be enough to just start pumping out re-skins, mars farming simulator, desert farming simulator, farm simulator 2, simulator farm, farm simulator mega edition, etc. Keep tweaking, what makes you more money? What gets your more downloads? How can you cross promote? Etc, etc.

    ----

    There's still no guarantee this approach will work, but chances are a lot better than just pumping out re-skins with no purpose.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2020
    BIGTIMEMASTER likes this.
  13. Billy4184

    Billy4184

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2014
    Posts:
    6,012
    I think it's a bit disappointing that a thread about spamming reskinned games is far better received that the average "I'm going to make an MMO" thread.

    As much as I want to see the Great Flood put pressure on stores to curate their content, personally I'm not going to tell someone that I think the idea is anything but very, very distasteful.
     
    Socrates likes this.
  14. pagan_poetry

    pagan_poetry

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2017
    Posts:
    107
    The sad part about Google Play is that Google's AI which checks your game can occasionally don't see a difference between your "concepts" and just consider it as a spam or clone. Doesn't matter how deep your concept is. => That is what i learned from the rumors on the internet.
     
  15. BIGTIMEMASTER

    BIGTIMEMASTER

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2017
    Posts:
    5,181
    I think what has been described here could be called rapid, iterative design. Definitely not the same thing as "spamming."

    More published games is of course more opportunity, but if your business strategy focuses on words like "spamming" I don't think that's a good model for success.
     
    Ryiah and JohnnyA like this.