Game chat bot Guess the Word - a few observations and questions about the development

    imageHey.

    When the game chat bot was written last September, I set the bar - if it dials 500 users in half a year (that is, until March 2019), I will write about this bot in Habré and share my thoughts and questions on game chat bots.

    It happened today - today the 500th user came to the chat bot.

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    And here is the game itself:
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    How I got the first 100 users


    Before starting the chat bot began to explore the issue of promoting and attracting users.

    There are many articles, a list of recipes which boil down to the following steps:

    1. add users from your phonebook;
    2. exchange cross-links with other more successful channels or chat bots;
    3. be placed on free and paid chat bots and directories;
    4. be placed on free and paid news and thematic resources;

    For me, the last two points proved to be the most effective, and the placement in paid and free directories brought the same number of users.

    The first point did not work, most likely, because in my contacts all the guys had already become big and serious. We looked and forgot, there is neither time nor interest to play.

    The second item did not work due to the fact that chatting (bots and channels) with less than 500 users to communicate with the owner of more promoted and successful channels is not very interesting (the figure I received in a dialogue with one of the channel owners, that's why I and I set myself the bar that I will write on Habr after the 500th user).

    The costs of the third and fourth points amounted to 15 thousand rubles. Moreover, some resources simply refused to write about the game chat bot, since "they do not work in such areas yet."

    I even managed to print an article about a chat bot in a real paper IT magazine!

    By the end of November, the number of users in the chat has exceeded 100 users.

    How I started to force users


    The essence of the game in chatbot is to guess the conceived word by the 4th picture. And as you guessed correctly, the game has hints, the number of which is limited (only 10 pieces).

    To restore the spent tips, you need to invite a new user to the game.
    After adding this mechanism, the number of users coming into the game has increased, although not significantly. However, this mechanism has provided a stable stream of users in the game chat bot.

    Few observations


    Receiving feedback on the chat bot, I found out that all people completely guess the words in different ways. For some, some words were very easy and uninteresting, but for others, quite the opposite, these same words caused great difficulties and led to the use of prompts.

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    Also, the complex, in my opinion, tasks that I have invented, are easily guessed by one type of people and cause difficulties for others.

    The same is true for the tasks invented by my colleagues, on the basis of which one can make an assumption that people can be divided by types of visualization.

    The log of erroneous answers (yes, I have it in the admin panel) showed that quite competent users are playing the game, since the spelling errors associated not just with typos, but with the wrong spelling of words, are very small.

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    After the reminders were added to the chatbot that the user had not entered the game for a long time, the activity in the chatbot was increased. There were also active and erudite users who constantly guess all the added words and then wait for new ones to be added.

    Yes, this game, realized as a chat bot, is interesting because it became potentially infinite, that is, starting small (at the time of the start there were only 30 words in the game), regularly adding new levels, at the time of writing the article in the game was already 430 levels. And this is not the limit.

    Plans and thoughts - and then what?


    So, the 500 user bar is overcome, which means that the game is interesting to someone, it means it's time to implement the conceived features.

    So, selecting assignments, I learned for myself a lot of interesting facts about this or that subject / place / event, which appeared in the assignment.

    For example, did you know that the first headquarters of the secret office was located in the Peter and Paul Fortress?

    This prompted the idea to add to some tasks interesting facts that can broaden the horizons.

    The second feature that users advised me about is the development and introduction of a rating system, awards and grading of players. Well, you have to do and enter the player rating system from the 500 level, based on the number of solved tasks, hints used, incorrect answers and probably some other characteristics - honestly, I did not think again.

    After thinking about the implementation of features, the question arises, what to do next with this? At a minimum - to support, ideally - to develop.

    And where to get the time and money? Yes, yes, yes, I am also mercantile. To attract others to create tasks, you need to somehow motivate them, and the best motivator is I don’t know, what a motivator I am, I know for sure that a universal motivator is money.

    The question of monetizing gaming chat bots remains a mystery to me. Just pushing advertising in the chat-bot does not allow me inner convictions.

    However, in my case, you can sell tips, this is when you again spent all the tips, and there is no one to invite more into the game. But the payment in the chatbot is not very convenient. I even had to write a separate chat bot that can generate links and / or QR codes for receiving payments, but this is a completely different story (if interested, this bot was written as an attempt to replace payment terminals for individual entrepreneurs in connection with updating 54 FZ, I’ll write separate article).

    A more interesting monetization option for me was the creation of “paid-for” tasks. For example, the manufacturer, ask to advertise his product. This product or its associated word is visualized in pictures, that is, the intended word is the advertised object, which, like other tasks, is laid out in the game. However, after talking with a couple of familiar manufacturers, I came to the conclusion that this format is very new and not very interesting for them.

    In the process of discussing the article with colleagues in the workshop, the idea arose to restore tips for viewing ads, as in mobile applications, but so far it has not come to fruition. How to implement - I will share the result.

    In general, the question of monetizing the gaming chat bot still, for me, remains open.

    Well, a more global question arises - what to do next with this chat bot? After all, I am interested in the process of creating a new one, launching something to make it work, debugging and stabilization. But to support and develop is not so interesting, but necessary.

    PS If the topic of gaming chat bots is close and interesting to someone, then he is ready to share his experience, thoughts and ideas. Well, if you have something to share - I will always be happy to hear.

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