Dots is back and ready for you to make more connections, and this time developer PlayDots is introducing some features that might help it connect with more money.
The studio released TwoDots for iOS yesterday. This sequel to Dots: A Game About Connecting brings back the line-drawing puzzle mechanics of the original but with some small changes that may encourage gamers to spend a bit more on the free-to-play app. The original Dots caught on fast and surpassed 3 million downloads after its first month on Apple’s mobile platform. With TwoDots, PlayDots may turn huge download numbers like that into more cash with optimized money-generating techniques. Consumers spent $16 billion on mobile games last year, and that number is going to get bigger this year. TwoDots could grab a significant portion of that.
As in the first game, players still need to connect spots of the same color to eliminate them, but TwoDots no longer has the original’s 60-second timer. This time around, you have to clear every stage in a certain number of moves. If you fail to beat the stage with the number of moves gives, you fail and lose a life … or you can pay $1 for 5 more moves. You get five lives, and they regenerate every 30 minutes … or you can pay $1 to restore yourself to full life. Hugely successful apps like role-playing match-3 game Puzzle & Dragons and developer King’s dominant puzzler, Candy Crush Saga, both use similar kinds of in-app purchases to generate hundreds of millions of dollars — and gate their players who don’t pay to play.
Since launching yesterday, TwoDots has already shot up the charts. It is the top-downloaded iPhone app in the U.S. today — although that hasn’t translated into a ton of money yet. It is the 179th top-grossing app in the states, but it should keep climbing as more people download it.