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Category: Marketing

When the market goes wild

Today’s news of the acquisition by Embracer Group, combined with other news of crazy investments in new products that have not yet proved anything in the world, led me today to make a fairly radical reflection on my personal LinkedIn. Radical and certainly full of bias.

We tend to evaluate successes and failures in the video games industry in terms of cash flow. The impact of a game on the world is evaluated by stock market experts, who focus on business performance and growth opportunities.

Why then does this news bother me? To understand this it is necessary to understand why I do this job. I study and work as a game designer every day. I do it because I find the idea of ​​having people in the world who spend moments of fun thanks to the fruit of my work truly fascinating.

That’s all.

Does anyone get rich thanks to the fruit of my work? I am very happy for this person.

But that’s not my life goal. My job is to create experiences that are able to marry the fantasies of some people looking for happy moments. The rest is a consequence.

When I see disproportionate valuations for “nice to have” features such as transportable avatars to other games and then see deals made with the creators of epic intellectual properties such as Final Fantasy and Tomb Raider, my head is short-circuited!

I know very well which thing has the most value for the players, between a feature and an epic story. It’s not being able to use a 3D model in more than one game to make a difference in gaming experiences.

Will trade events for videogames ever come back?

Even this year we are probably going to see a lot of streaming on YouTube announcing the new lineups of games for the biggest gaming corporations around the world.

I don’t know you, but 2021 was pretty boring on this point to me. Teasers are cool, I like to see what is cooking. But, also if I have never participated in an E3, for example, I nurture a “saudade” around this old World.

Anyways, the pandemic brought the opportunity to improve things. The future events should avoid being just a walled garden, in my humble opinion. We have the chances and the tech to include everyone. To offer a great experience to the participants, but also to let people from all over the world pitch their ideas to publishers. 

To me trade events will come back strongly!

Marketing is part of the game

Marketing people are often not part of your immediate team. They are external stakeholders, people less involved in the day-to-day of your job. Their role is critical for the success of the game. In fact, you can make the best game but a lot of people around the World is making the best game right now. Marketing can drive the success or failure of the whole game.

Pyramid of Modern Marketing

The other day I was reading a blog post on modern marketing by Seth Godin.

Intention is the most important layer. Is about the changes that you are seeking to make with your game. What are your unique selling points? Game designers help in aligning visions and prioritize resources. You may start from your competitors and your Personas and help define every iteration.

Retention is the second grade. Getting new players costs money and if your players are happy with your game they can bring others. Mouth to mouth is still the most impactful spreading medium out there.

Remarkability (conversations that happen as the result of your work) and Permission (the privilege of delivering anticipated, personal and relevant messages to the people) are part of core marketing activities. You can observe them, but it’s their job not yours.

Working with the marketing team

The marketing team usually does the job alone. Best realities I have worked for have regular meetings with them. Game designers can help with the brand, the voice and the tone consistency. We can help with intention and retention.

In case of f2p a company has to run massive creative campaigns (mostly on Facebook and Google) game designers can be of great help in developing creative concepts. From creative concepts, marketing team is capable of develop multiple variants. The big user acquisition machine is constantly fed up with those creative variants. As you can imagine, your role at the top of this funnel is critical.


  • Help to sketch creative concepts that match the game’s brand
  • Maintain and use content guidelines for those


  • Make sure that the feature of your game set your players for success
  • Get information about the strength of signal of the monetization events. Those events are sent to ad platforms as postbacks to optimize user acquisition campaigns. Put the strongest ones near of the start of the experience!