Porting Mobile Games

Forum for discussion on Game porting for mobile phones and j2me supported devices including device information.

Porting Mobile Games

Postby DevelopmentTeam » Mon Sep 25, 2006 4:52 am

The market for wireless games and content is here and now according to recent announcements by industry pundits. Nokia has estimated that in 2003 there were more than 10,000,000 downloads of Java enabled games per month worldwide; Ovum claims over 250 million Java enabled devices are in the market today; and, mobile industry analysts Zelos Group recently estimated 2003 mobile content revenues at over $500 million globally. All suggest that this is just the beginning of a lucrative market for mobile entertainment products.

One of the biggest challenges facing the mobile games industry, however, is the sheer number of different devices and local market requirements. With more than 250 different J2ME enabled devices in the market, along with multi-language and other customization requirements from mobile operators, a game developer faces a challenge in tapping into this broad market opportunity. Porting games from one mobile device to another has become a thorn in the side of an otherwise successful industry.
User avatar
DevelopmentTeam
Site Admin
 
Posts: 661
Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2006 8:39 am
Location: India

Porting Choices

Postby DevelopmentTeam » Mon Sep 25, 2006 4:53 am

In the past, many game studios considered porting skills
User avatar
DevelopmentTeam
Site Admin
 
Posts: 661
Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2006 8:39 am
Location: India

Internal Porting

Postby DevelopmentTeam » Mon Sep 25, 2006 4:55 am

Developing the expertise to port across mobile devices internally is a risky approach. Firstly, strong relationships with the mobile operators and device manufacturers around the world are needed to ensure availability of the necessary information, as well as guidelines and devices to port the applications. Secondly, global testing facilities are needed to be able to load applications onto the actual devices and test them
User avatar
DevelopmentTeam
Site Admin
 
Posts: 661
Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2006 8:39 am
Location: India

Postby DevelopmentTeam » Mon Sep 25, 2006 4:58 am

The Outsourcing Alternative
As the pressure mounts to get more versions of games out faster, game publishers find themselves turning to outsourcing. Whether it is with small local shops or with larger, low cost, offshore software houses, the challenges remain substantial.

While a company that specializes in mobile game porting is more likely to have success in sourcing devices and mobile operator guidelines, they remain challenged with global testing facilities. But probably the biggest challenge, not unlike any outsourcing project, is maintaining quality. Often, to meet the strict deadlines imposed on them, outsourcing firms employ multiple employees to port the same application. The result is inconsistencies that are unacceptable to the publisher. No matter how clear the guidance, individuals will approach creating code differently, resulting in different end user experiences.

Again, porting partners that employ automation tools can provide time to market and consistency across a broader range of device builds. This is a key differentiator that must be looked for when selecting a porting partner.
User avatar
DevelopmentTeam
Site Admin
 
Posts: 661
Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2006 8:39 am
Location: India

Postby DevelopmentTeam » Mon Sep 25, 2006 4:58 am

Porting Strategies and Solutions
While the mobile market is quickly becoming a real opportunity for existing PC and console game titles, and the revenues are starting to roll in, the porting challenge can easily derail the opportunity to reach this massive market.

Through standardization and reuse of code elements, Sumea has streamlined its internal process to create significant efficiencies in porting. Other publishers such as Gameloft have developed teams on multiple continents to be able to handle local testing and relationships with mobile operators. Tira Wireless has developed an automated porting platform called Tira Jump that supports close to 100 J2ME devices and even can handle translation ports. Tira currently offers the Jump service to mobile game publishers, such as THQ Wireless, and plans to come out with a licensed version of the software for sale in the near future.

Whatever approach is taken, it is clear that game developers and publishers have to consider their porting strategies carefully. The market for mobile games is here and growing rapidly. The demographics of the market for wireless services and for console and PC games are very similar
User avatar
DevelopmentTeam
Site Admin
 
Posts: 661
Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2006 8:39 am
Location: India


Return to Mobile Game Porting and Testing

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron