Augmented Reality (AR) Game Development: The Next Level of Gaming

July 15, 2024 9 min read
ar game development the next level of future gaming

The number of gamers and their spending on mobile games has increased exponentially. In 2021, the total spending on mobile games reached $116 billion (DataAI). At least 174 games generated more than $100 million in the same year. This showcases the growth in the gaming landscape.

India, the US, and Brazil are the top three markets for mobile app downloads in Q1 2022 (SensorTower).

market-share-for-top-countries-by-mobile-game-spending-2018-q1-2022

Considering the increasing number of downloads and widening landscape, this is the perfect time for businesses to consider game app development. With increasing demand, and the need to improve customer engagement and enhance business visibility, more customers are developing mobile game applications.

With leading technologies such as AR, VR, and AI gaining momentum, it is a good idea to implement them when developing game applications.

This article will examine AR game development and why more businesses should implement this technology.

A Detailed Look at the Mobile Gaming Landscape

Mobile game app development is one of the accelerators responsible for the growth of video games. In 2022, the total revenue generated from mobile games reached $41.7 billion (Statista).

The growth is directly connected to technological advancements, increased smartphone usage in the post-Covid era, and innovation in the gaming industry.

User penetration is yet another metric that showcases the growth of the mobile app gaming industry. It is expected to reach 29.2% by 2027 (Statista).

If we look at the mobile landscape, we can see that Google Play sees a positive revenue compared to the Apple store for mobile games.

There are different types of mobile games, and the most popular categories include Puzzles, strategy, and Casinos (Statista).

mobile-games-revenue-genre

The average revenue per user is estimated to reach $164 by 2023 (Statista).

The landscape is pretty promising, and it is the perfect time to launch your Augmented Reality game development for the end users. Augmented Reality is slowly becoming integral to the mobile gaming niche to provide better engagement and interactive apps.

The AR game development market is estimated to reach $33.5 billion by 2027 (Cision).

Along with new AR tech and tools, a lot of transformation has occurred in the AR gaming industry that can improve engagement (Ericsson).

changes-that-would-make-ar-games-more-interesting

If you are building an AR app for your business, this is the right time. Let’s look at the types of AR games and the top five games in the market.

The Types of AR Games

There are two ways to segregate the AR mobile application- genre and intent. The idea is to create intuitive and interactive mobile applications that do not impact your battery life.

types of ar games

Let’s discuss the different AR game types based on the genre.

  • Adventure: Games like Pokemon Go, where you are hunting for characters or walking through the real world while it integrates with the virtual one, is an interesting genre
  • Sports: Creating interactive and intuitive versions of actual sports games can increase app engagement
  • Exergames: Interactive fitness genre is a proper gaming AR application for a niche of users
  • Role Playing: This is an exceptionally intuitive genre that can help increase user engagement

Let’s discuss the different AR experiences derived from the intended design.

  • Educational: The idea behind creating the application is to educate the end users. This interactive learning game can help enhance the knowledge of the mobile application
  • Entertainment: The interactive mobile app is designed to entertain the end users
  • Social: The social interaction or engagement app can improve the outcome of AR game development

Top Five AR Games

Let’s check the top five AR games:

top five ar games detailed infographic

The Benefit of Using AR in Gaming

Adding AR to your mobile game can increase engagement and make it more interactive. Let’s look at the benefits of AR mobile game development.

  • When you create AR game applications, you allow users to do things in the virtual world that they cannot do in the real world.
  • When you add AR, you can easily improve communication with your users. It offers better and effortless play. You are in the virtual realm with your friends, which makes it exciting to play the mobile game.
  • You can easily connect and collaborate with other users globally using the mobile AR game.
  • The technology can help improve game applications in various fields. For instance, you can develop interactive applications for sports, education, etc.
  • AR has gained a lot of importance in the educational domain. It is an exciting time for developers to build apps that can easily educate users and enhance their knowledge.
  • The AR game app development can improve users’ interest in your niche. You can improve their ability and make them more functional with the mobile game.

4 Tools to Bring your Creative Vision to Life

ar game development tools

1. AR Foundation

This incredible tool connects with Unity to build AR gaming applications. It is a cross-platform framework that allows you to create multi-platform experiences. The tool can add core AR functionality to the game application. It helps incorporate pre-built libraries and source code to enhance the outcome. You can track the device’s location in the application. You can even create games for Microsoft Hololens with this tool.

2. Unity MARS

It helps speed up your development processes and accelerate game app development. This tool offers extensive templates and pre-built codes to incorporate dynamic objects and virtual environments that can improve AR game application development.

3. Unity as a Library

With this framework, you can easily control and manage your game app development. It allows you to load features that can enhance the usability of the game application. You can create projects on Android Gradle and ios Xcode with this framework.

4. XR Interaction Toolkit

This is yet another Unity package toolkit that allows you to create interactive mobile game applications with minimal effort. You can create interactions and devise component-based games to improve engagement.

Read More: Your Guide to Powerful Mobile Game Design

The Complete Process to Build AR Game Application

Here is a complete breakdown of the process of releasing an AR game application.

ar game app development process

1. Decide the Type of Gaming Application

The first step is the plan the genre for the AR mobile game application you plan to develop. It could be a puzzle game or a strategy game that requires AR integration.

The idea is built on the type of game application you want to give your users. For example, Pokemon Go is an adventure game that allows you to interact and find virtual objects in the real world. The idea is to populate the characters based on your location. You connect with other people in the location and start finding the characters.

Deciding the idea, planning the AR implementation, and checking how the app will work is the first step to building a successful game application. The idea is to enhance the gaming experience with your AR idea.

2. Top Features of the AR Game App

Decide the top features you want to implement in the gaming application. In Pokemon Go and Jurassic games, you had to integrate GPS for the location-based populations. Similarly, the games had a feature allowing users to share their milestones with others.

These were simple features added to the top games. You can begin planning the features based on the idea and movement within the game. You must decide what some of the things that are important for the game’s interaction and engagement are. It will help you make it more usable and useful for the users.

3. Tech Stack for Development

There are specific Kits devised for the AR integration within the application. Depending on what type of gaming app you are building and the operating system you aim to consider, you can use the pre-defined kits.

The tech stack is an important part of AR game app development. You must start by determining if you want to use an iOS-only application or a multi-platform solution for your idea. Depending on this, you can choose the framework, ARkits, and tools to accelerate mobile game development.

4. Design the Levels

The next step is to create the levels and design the game screen. You should know your first level and how the users can reach the next level. Every screen should be designed to build an organized and clutter-free gaming application.

For example, if, after capturing five characters, the user reaches the next level, make sure to design the screen and interactions for the first level.

At each level, keep the design simple and intuitive.

5. Develop and Test the Application

Once you have designed the levels and the screens for the mobile gaming application, you must start working on developing the backend. Your communication between the view layer and database is an important part of mobile game development.

Once you finish developing the mobile application, you can begin testing the app. Ensure complete testing of the mobile application for a successful launch. You may want to move the app to the emulator to know if it functions properly.

6. Launch and Maintenance

Once you have tested and optimized the mobile game app, you should launch the application. It is important to ensure your app is ready for the launch.

Your work is not over despite the launch of the application. You may want to maintain and improve the application to ensure it syncs with the user’s needs. Continuous improvement and feedback is an important part of maintenance.

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Limitations of AR in Game App Development

AR in game development has its set of challenges. Here we will talk about the limitations of implementing AR in game development.

  • Security issues: As there are fewer standards surrounding the game app development, it is possible that implementing AR comes with its set of security issues. You will notice that AR game development results from trials and errors, which can result in lapses and negligence. If you don’t take proper care in designing the database interactions, you might cause vulnerabilities and security issues.
  • Technical Limitations: The mobile devices have components that can interfere with AR technology. It can lead to inaccurate readings. You must understand all the features and components within the device before planning the mobile app.
  • Risky Situations: Through AR, the game app integrates the real world with the virtual world to create a more engaging outcome. It is possible that the real-world locations, where virtual components are present, could be dangerous.

Conclusion

Augmented Reality is a growing niche. Developing mobile game app solutions extending Augmented Reality experiences can help improve user experience. It will lead to more downloads and excellent conversions for your business. You can attract premium users and increase profits for the mobile game app solutions with the perfectly designed app solution.

Expert App Devs is an expert Augmented Reality game development company. We have proficiency in Unity and AR-Unity game development frameworks. Hire AR game developers to create engaging and profitable gaming solutions.

Irfan Kureshi-img

Irfan Kureshi

Project Manager

Irfan Kureshi is a Project Manager with expertise in Unity, Mobile Game Development, Metaverse, NFT Marketplace App Development, Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, Mixed Reality & WebGL using Unity. He strives to bring the latest technological advancements into projects that he manages.

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