Nounish Playground - The Game

Nounish Playground - The Game

TL;DR:

We’re proposing to build a mobile platformer game with 700 levels in which we introduce players to nounish concepts and educate them on Nouns DAO and adjacent extensions while playing through fun and engaging maps. We’re seeking $200,000 USD which covers a professional production team and development over 9 months for 700 playable levels plus a marketing campaign.

Description

We want to teach players about Nouns DAO in a simple and entertaining way by introducing them to each noun and their journey to being minted plus introducing them to the people, places and things in the nouniverse, such as the noggles.

Click on the picture below to see the video:point_down:

The game is divided into two parts:

  • Single Player
  • Multiplayer

Single Player

The single-player mode is a platformer game.

In this mode the player controls their noun to reach it’s destination - to be minted and sent to auction at Nouns DAO.

There is a unique level for each noun minted, designed with various obstacles and challenges.

We as a nounish family are waiting every day to see what the next noun will look like and how much the winning bid is at the auction for the previous noun, but we don’t know anything about each noun’s background story. We don’t know what a noun has been through before it gets minted! This concept was the inspiration for this game.

Gameplay

The player controls their noun throughout each level in a 3D playground. Nouns can run, jump, grab, climb, dive + more to overcome the obstacles until the final point is reached and the noun goes through the gate to get minted.

There is ether on the path that the player must collect to meet the goal. The goal amount of ether is set based on how much that noun sold for at auction.

After completing each level, the player is awarded three stars. The first star is just for completing the level and the second one is awarded if the count of collected ether has reached the winning bid amount and the last star is awarded based on the time spent completing the level.

For example: The first level is about Noun 1 being minted and the player will have to guide the noun through the course while collecting enough ether to meet the winning bid on that noun, all the while trying to do it in the fastest time possible.

Click on the pictures below to watch an example of the Noun 1 & 2 levels of the game :point_down:

Multiplayer

In this mode of the game, players enter a battle royal like Fall Guys and compete with one another.

Each session starts with 40 players and three matches are held in each session. At the end of each match only half of the players wake it through, then at the end of the third match, the final player wins the match.

The game and environment design is nounish and each level/match has its own unique theme based on nounish extensions such as lil nouns, Gnars DAO, Alps DAO and many others where spectators are members of these communities.

In multiplayer mode, we’ll hold monthly in-game events relevant to DAO news, events and popoular holidays.

Why a Mobile Game?

Mobile games are easily available to everyone with a smartphone these days and have a wide audience range.

Those who play this game get to know Nouns DAO in a fun, interactive way and it is likely they’d introduce it to their friends and other NFT lovers they know or meet.

How Long Will It Take To Produce?

The early access version will be released after six months and then it will take three months more until the final release.
The game will be released through the App store and Google play.

Why Should You Vote For This Game?

We feel like it’s time there was a completley nouns branded game that can introduce Nouns DAO to the rest of society.

The game model allows for a simple way for people to digest information about what Nouns DAO is and how it works, but also brings exposure beyond the Nouns ecosystem.

All of the content for this game will be open source and will be available to the public, so that we can update it over time and add more games and features to the game.

You’ve seen and love our work with the nounish music videos we’ve created, let’s make a game with even more impact!

Click on the picture below to see the music video:point_down:

Marketing

There’s a few ways we plan to market the game including:

  • App Store Optimization (ASO): This gives maximum exposure to our game in the store by lowering our cost per install (CPI) and filtering high-value users. It all needs to have localized content (Keywords, Categories, Screenshots, and Video Trailers) per region and culture. This is a full-time job of a user acquisition manager excluding producing visual content.
  • Landing page: This is a one-page website where customers can learn more about our game. The landing page includes links to the App Store and Google Play Store, promo videos, a call-to-action, screenshots, gameplay trailers and reviews.
  • Different ad formats: Video ads, playable ads and rewarding video ads. Including all these three ad formats in our game helps us to not lose any potential of ads.

Who Are We?

The Genius Slackers team is an independent producer of video games. The company was founded in 2016 by Arash Negahban and Saeed Abbasi.

The business began with contract work, however, after obtaining the necessary experience and gathering a talented team ‘Genius Slackers’ began work on its projects.

The purpose of the company is to produce unique stories and gameplays.

Production Team Areas of Expertise
Programming
Art direction
Game design
Level design
Environment Art
Animation
Character design
UI design
Lighting
Technical art
Music
Sound Design

000

Budget and Cost Breakdown

This budget covers 9 months of production to deliver a game with 700 levels plus a solid marketing plan.

To make this game economically viable, we will use some existing assets created by the community by directing all technical designs to be compatible with the Nouns 3D project and implementing audio made with the Noun Sounds PLAYground, ultimately saving a lot on costs for a game like this.

Programming Team: $42,000
Art production: $54,000
Game design & Level design: $54,000
Sound & composition: $10,000
Marketing: $40,000
Total Budget: $200,000

Measuring Success

We will be able to measure success in a number of ways including, but not limited to:

  • analytics on game installs/downloads
  • daily active users
  • call to action clicks
  • landing page metrics
  • social media engagement and analytics

Thank you for your consideration! We hope to get the chance to build the best and most nounish game to exist

7 Likes

Looks really really good.
My suggestion is make the game profitable, so you can reduce the value asked.
Things like placing other game ads or selling in-game items as nfts and give a portion back to the treasury. But that’s just my take, if anyone disagrees please let me know why.

2 Likes

Wishing you good luck @Arash

You should share links to some of your prior work! I think you’re very talented and show off what you’ve built for nouns/lilnouns to date!

I’m glad you are considering going the Mobile game route. Feels like the best way to proliferate the meme to as many people as possible. Also going to be interested in how you will tell the story of Nouns individually and as a DAO collectively.

3 Likes

@Arash is an amazing artist. I agree with @al409.eth that you should share more of your work here. The prop is great but seeing your motion, sound and lighting work is important. FYI…Make sure you click the pics…that took me a sec to figure out…even though it says it right there lol.

NounsDAO will grow through many channels. Games and interactive digital environments will ultimately be one of the large growth drivers. Starting this journey with talented and nounish builders is something the DAO can afford and should be doing now. These projects are highly achievable and have large potential growth trajectories.

Adding profits to games is tricky I would assume. Perhaps that is easier via nft assets. Is that possible with current store policies? As for the game build requirements, cost and necessary team, I know nothing and will defer. I do think that there could be a few more details about the game environment, platform and technical requirements to interact in the future as a user.

Without adding revenue potential to the game, how will this project exist in the future? Will there need to be additional funding? Will the ad model fully fund in the future? What will be the requirement to manage that ad platform? Who sees what ads? What are nounish ads? Sounds like a straightforward model just curious. Not sure we have seen ads yet.

Using extensions in different levels is an excellent idea…and we hope there are wild crazy little FOODNOUNS running around and doing who knows what else…

The 20% Marketing budget is good. I think speaking to the CCO assets in those campaigns is important. DAO events in game is awesome and could be a fun way to on-board and learn. Seeing your work already, I know the marketing assets would be excellent.

Really hope we can support @Arash and Saeed in this build. Thank you for using discourse and asking for feedback.

2 Likes

We will have ads implemented as we mentioned in the proposal, and also there will be an in-game shop where players can purchase attachments and nounish skins. We have already reduced the asked value to the minimum we could, we even are going to use some of the pre-made contents of the DAO like 3d nouns and noun sounds to reduce the funds.

2 Likes

As you know, I’m a supporter and will continue to help where I can.

Great feedback from the others here.

I had a thought about revenue and potential to reduce upfront cost… maybe it’s possible to implement custom sponsorship ads. Where other nounish extensions, wallet companies and relevant sponsors could pay to have custom and tasteful ads placed within the game as well.

I personally dislike the ads that a lot of apps/games use and it’s a shame that it’s the primary method of revenue usually.

I love the skins and items idea and would love to see them created as NFTs so the user can own them and you have a source of revenue in collections of these and the players can verify their wallet within the app to use them.

Definitely need to keep the plain text links below all the images like in the hackmd. And agree with others here, we should add more of your work in a dedicated section with links to tweets and videos. Screenshots of popular tweets like the ones from 4156 would also be beneficial to add to the visuals here.

Feel free to share with me and I’ll add to the hackmd so it’s all in the markdown and you can edit/reply with edits on discourse.

:saluting_face:

2 Likes

I’m not well versed in gaming and its relationship to proliferation; however, I consider this game to be very nounish, in that its story incorporates the noggles and incorporates auction prices, minting and the winning process in the game as storytelling mechanic analogous to actual nouns minting process and cadence: “one noun, every day, forever”. The graphics are well done, and I appreciate the fact that this isn’t a reskin of another game.

You’ve created videos for Lil Nouns, and my current wallpaper on Twitter is from one of those videos featuring my Lil Noun. You’ve participated in Prop House and have been an active participant in the community. Really look forward to more feedback and hopeful that you’re able to build something fun and exciting for the community.

2 Likes

good job. The proposal was complete and transparent. Arash’s team is professional and creative. In my opinion, this game can later become a play to earn, if it has good marketing. Dao introduces Nance beautifully. I think you can suggest multi-step funding.

2 Likes

Nice job and good use of the https://3dnouns.com/ undead head! I like the fact that you are building on top of existing CC0 nouns projects like 3D nouns and NounSounds.

I think you could progressively ramp up the budget using the different types of nounish funding mechanism as well. As an indie game, without the crypto layer, you could probably easily produce 5-10 out of the 700 levels (!) with DCS type of funding for example, and get some metrics to feed back the project and bring it to sustainability.

3 Likes

I really like this idea. As a contributor to Nouns Esports I’ve been thinking of ways to bring a party game to fruition for nouns because of the accessibility and ease of entry it brings to gamers. I think this is a great opportunity. There’s 2 things I’d like to see and I think Nouns Esports could take the ball and run with it on release:

  1. Steam launch. This game obviously is similar to Fall Guys and Stumble guys. Both with massive player bases. Fall guys is non-mobile and stumble guys is cross platform. Enabling this game to be cross platform on steam + mobile, then hopefully future consoles like the switch, xbox, and PS5 would be a grand slam. It’d put it hopefully in a position of quality in between the two games. Hopefully we would see some new course designs that don’t copy fall guys courses 1-1 and introduce new innovative hazards and player interactions in multiplayer.
  2. Custom lobbies for tournaments. The ability to create custom lobby would allow us to host tournaments and integrate this game into our current noggles cup format(one of which we’re hosting this Saturday in Fall Guys with $11,600 in prizes for participants).

If the budget would require more, absolutely ask for it within reason to build the most polished and engaging game possible.

Also, I would remove any corny references to web3 and crypto. References aren’t bad but onboarding gamers doesn’t need the added friction of our crypto buzzwords

3 Likes

Sure, I have already shared some and will share more.
Thanks for your awesome feedback.:pray:

1 Like

Creating a Nourish Game seems like a great idea, but I have some concerns. To start Genius slackers does not have a functioning website, The proposal claims that the studio was created in 2016 but as far as I can tell they have only ever released one game “What Happened” to a very mediocre reception. How have they continued to fund themselves the past 2 years since their first game launch?

Modern games and Mobile games tend to run on a live service model so only having funding for 9 months seems short sited. How / who will be paying for the servers to support the online play after the game’s launch?

Without seeing more work from the developers, it’s hard to have confidence that they would actually be able to produce a quality game that represents the Nouns community well.

Is there more to the campaign mode to communicate what nouns is other than “After completing each level, the player is awarded three stars. The first star is just for completing the level and the second one is awarded if the count of collected ether has reached the winning bid amount and the last star is awarded based on the time spent completing the level.” while the minting mechanism is unique to nouns it does not communicate very much about the community or why someone would want to join or participate in the ecosystem.

I appreciate the time and effort that went into creating this proposal, but it is my belief that creating a mediocre crypto game tends to hurt a project more than help them.

2 Likes

Thank you so much for such great and helpful feedback. Let me clarify some of the details here. We currently do not have a vision of selling NFTs via the app, but it is just the beginning.
The potential of a massive gamers community on the App Store and Google Play is noticeable enough not to worry about policy limitations of those stores on the blockchain, besides of that so many gamers may not have a deep understanding of blockchain, therefore we are going to focus on that community to produce the app as they wish and are familiar with.

We have added several revenue potentials like different formats of ads and in-game purchases through an in-game shop that players can pay for having different skins and customizing their game. there will be no need for any additional funding in the future unless one of these scenarios happens: 1- the number of users raised so high that the current support team would not be able to respond. 2- DAO would order a massive extension that had not been ever in our plan.

And more about the ads. Ads policies are different on each platform, but in general, they are in full control of stores and are programmed to be seen by the people who are interested in the context, I don’t know much about their algorithms.
There are different types of ads: Static ads, video ads, playable ads, and rewarding ads that the app stores provide us via APIs.
But Nounish and Nouns DAO’s content and ads can be a part of the game’s skin itself.

Using nounish extensions is a must for us, surely you’ll see something nounish doing WHO knows, where ever you look.

1 Like

Thank you so much for the feedback. Let me address what you are concerned about one by one. We have temporarily made the Genius Slackers website inaccessible to upgrade it and will take a bit much to run it again cause we are doing it ourselves besides our other tasks.
On the other hand, what I have done since I entered the Nouns community that the DAO is aware of will be enough not to be concerned about a none functioning website.

As you said modern games and mobile games tend to run on a live service model and that’s why we use Microsoft PlayFab services which are free during development.
PlayFab Multiplayer Server builds automatically scale with your player base which means fewer players at less cost and more players during holidays at more cost, as we designed and calculated the cost per install (CPI) and optimized it by App Store Optimization (ASO) which at the end gave us a CPI of 1.5$ which means we’ll need 37,500$ to have 25,000 players. On the other hand, our in-app purchase design and ads revenue calculations will have revenue that will easily compensate the CPI letting us pay for the automatically scaled servers of PlayFab and more, you can learn more about PlayFab price sheet on their website. We scaled the game to fit the time we proposed and want to maintain it after that with updates and upgrades.

“Without seeing more work from the developers, it’s hard to have confidence that they would actually be able to produce a quality game that represents the Nouns community well.”
Well, I Arash Negahban the director of the What Happened game released in 2020 on the Steam store with a clear resume and fame in the DAO am providing this proposal on the behalf of the team.
The quality of my work is well known and I am the person who is going to manage it all, so there must not be any doubt about the quality if you know my other works as high quality. honestly there is no more evidence for this particular case.

“Is there more to the campaign mode to communicate what nouns is”
I think we’ll hit the spot during 700 levels, ofcourse we’ll be open to any idea ordered from the DAO and we can add it to the game after having the required budget.

I appreciate the time you spent writing this helpfull feedback.

1 Like

Thank you so much I hope you’ll enjoy the game when we make it.

Thanks.
What we the blockchain users know about play-to-earn does not yet fit the outer market that is of course a pure market for games and gamers. There are a few other algorithms there to simulate the idea that does not fit the scope of the current proposal and needs more contribution.
We are not concerned about the future to propose multi-step funding as we are here in the DAO and DAO will not go anywhere except it takes us with itself, so when DAO decides that it wants it to be a play-to-earn, we’ll be there to negotiate.

Thank you so much for this encouraging feedback. We love to expand it to the moon by adding cross-platform however, it is our current plan proportional to the time and budget we proposed. Our long-term vision covers all you desire and I hope we get there soon.

Hi Arash, fellow game developer building web3 games in Unity.

Great proposal, I love the game mechanics, design and look of the game. Making a fun mobile game is challenging, however I believe your team can do it!

Here are my opinions as a game designer, hope these help your thinking…

Monetization:

Games funded by Nouns should try to become profitable, to support the ongoing running of the game once it is finished. Your prop has this, I love it! Let’s dig in…

Ads: a bad idea, because they will ruin the player experience AND you will only make pennies in return unless the audience is tens of thousands of players

IAP: in-app purchasing is a better way to monetize a game, but free-to-play often wrecks the game loop by stuffing it full of money asks (buy a big chest of fake coins, anyone?)

NFTs: for a game to be web3, THIS is the way. Using NFTs, innovating on a new model where in-game items can be shared across games. And NFTs could sell for a high price, providing ongoing funding to your project.

Game Platforms:

Seeing the game on iPhone and Android is excellent, better than Steam for sure.

Yet these mobile platforms are web2, centralized, and the app stores are gatekeepers. If your game uses NFTs, as suggested for monetization, it might be a problem.

The answer? I believe a web3 project should run in-browser first, iPhone second, Android third. And these 3 platforms cover 90% of gamers who want to try your game, it’s all you need.

And for web3 development (Metamask, NFT loading, NFT minting) the browser has full capabilities and mobile platforms are quite limited.

What to cut, to add NFTs and web?

  1. Making 700 levels is going to eat tons of development time. Start with 70 levels (or less) that are fun, make sure players actually finish them all, add more levels later.

  2. Integrating ads, this will ruin the experience and gobble a bunch of development time

  3. Making an IAP system with “buy this chest of fake coins” monetization, this design takes tons of new UI screens, and the economics are very hard to get right

Questions:

  1. Would NFTs work as your core monetization mechanic?
  2. Which game engine are you using, and does it support web publishing?
  3. If your game engine doesn’t support web, why not build in Unity? :slight_smile:

Great proposal, I wish you well and hope to see this game made!

3 Likes

I love this!

Definitely think there should be more marketing budget for it though. You really want to push this game out to the masses we are going to need a bigger budget for marketing to get gaming social media influencers to push it onto their audiences. Ad spots for sponsorships is also pretty important / having the ability to purchase a premium pass to block ads. Also in game add ons are HUGE in free to play app store games.

Just my two cents. I love it but 100% need more marketing budget to push this to a large player base.

2 Likes

This would be a great and very nounish proliferation tool🔥. I know you as a talented artists who’s shipped lots of cool stuff for nouns and lil nouns so I’d be very excited to see how this would play out. Wishing you the best of luck!

1 Like