Although the mobile market is oversaturated, our game concept is unique enough to stand out in this cluttered market. Kanji Samurai’s main mechanic has the player draw directly on their mobile device’s screen in order to replicate Kanji to fight powerful samurai. Our game has both a narrative and an educational component, and generally feels more game like than the other titles on the app store that aim to teach player’s Kanji. Kanji Samurai will stand out beside the other Japanese learning titles because it is not purely educational–it is also about fighting enemies to become the most powerful samurai. Our narrative component, traditionally inspired Japanese art, and cultural accuracy will make Kanji Samurai stand out among the other Japanese language learning apps on the android play store. Kanji Samurai is not targeted towards a Japanese or hardcore educational audience, rather, it is targeted towards a younger audience who have a general interest in the Japanese language and culture.
According to Nielsons.com, a leader in market research of consumers across the globe, mobile games are most likely to achieve success by “producing visibility through promotions, by generating social buzz through word of mouth recommendations, [and] by retaining owners through higher levels of engagement.” In promoting Kanji Samurai, we will have to produce buzz at least a few weeks in advance of its release–doing so causes hype which will make people more likely to download our game when it comes out on the app store. The target audience for Kanji Samurai is relevantly young and therefore active on social media. Traditional advertising methods on television and websites will likely not work to get our target market’s attention. Neilsons notes that teens and females typically find out about new apps either through the recommendations of friends and family or on a social network. In the weeks leading up to Kanji Samurai’s release, we will advertise on Facebook and spread the buzz about our upcoming game by encouraging our friends, family, and supporters to post about the game on social media. In this new world where everyone seems to be interconnected, social media is key in appealing to our primarily millennial audience.
No matter how much we advertise, our game will not be a success if it does not have substance, which is why Neilsons points out that mobile apps remain successful past their initial release only by keeping those who downloaded the game interested and engaged. Kanji Samurai is far more engaging than the alternative Japanese language learning apps on the google play store, which primarily focus on study rather than story, art, and fun. Japanese Kanji Study and Kanji Senpai are two examples of the Kanji study apps available on the app store. While they do offer the player a wide variety of Japanese characters to learn, they are less fun because it is purely a study tool; it is not a game. Likewise, Japanese Katakana Handwriting aims to educate the player in the Japanese language of Katakana, but players simply trace the character; they never have to write it out for themselves. These games and others like them are purely education-based. While there are a select few apps on the play store that combine learning with compelling gameplay, such as Kanji no Owari-Learn Japanese! which is a basic role playing game, these games do not task the player with writing the Kanji themselves, but rather pick it from a list, which is not as effective for players to learn. By combining learning with compelling gameplay, traditional Japanese art, and a light narrative, Kanji Samurai will stand out among the more lackluster titles on the google play store.
“Success in the Mobile Gaming Market Can Be Explainable and Predictable.” Success in the Mobile Gaming Market Can Be Explainable and Predictable. N.p., 3 May 2016. Web. 24 Oct. 2016.
“Attention! That’s the Secret to Mobile Game Success.” Attention! That’s the Secret to Mobile Game Success. N.p., 6 June 2016. Web. 24 Oct. 2016.
Kanji no Owari-Learn Japanese! https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.SekaiProject.OwariNoKanji&hl=en
Japanese Katakana Handwriting https://play.google.com/store/apps/detailsid=com.teachersparadise.japanesealphabetkatakanahandwriting&hl=en
Japanese Kanji Study https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.mindtwisted.kanjistudy&hl=en
Kanji Senpai https://play.google.com/store/apps/detailsid=jp.rodriguez.kanjisenpai.android&hl=en