A Thinking Ape

Meego Village

Overview

Made by A Thinking Ape , Meego Village was a builder game where you had to raise Meegos to build the biggest village possible.

My role

The game had been out for a few years already, and was seeing a decrease in engagement. I took over as Product Lead and applied my UX skillset in an attempt to keep the revenue metrics strong, and engage players once again.

The main village, maxed out at the highest level in Meego Village.

Big New Feature

Problem

For new experimental and big features like this one , Quest Portals, they can get very intricate and interface-heavy, and we weren't sure how our target audience would respond to them.

The original designs for this feature involved cutting stones for a chance at collecting a rare gem. Collect 5 different gems and you could open a portal to a new world with exotic treasures and rewards.

Solution

I prototyped the entire feature to get early feedback from our target audience.

Here you can see the images I used in a paper prototype for the Stone Cutting feature alone, which was just one part to the bigger feature. Click here to view the full image.

Result

Though our hardcore users found it fun, the main result from the majority of our test participants was that it was too complicated. We simplified it, and it became our most engaging feature.

A wireframe from the Stone Cutting feature inside the big Quest Portals update for Meego Village.

More Design

For other features that were not as in-depth, like Gifting, I would run quicker prototypes with wireframes and mockups, as I still found them beneficial for the final version and it helped me communicate those designs to the rest of the team.

Once I had the wireframes and prototype done, I would present it to the core team and reiterate if needed . I would then write up a functionality document, outlining all of the edge cases, which would then be shared with the team.

Here you can see an example of a wireframe I made and its final version in the game . On Meego, I worked on dozens of different features to help increase our KPIs. If you want to see more examples, please don't hesitate to reach out.

A wireframe for the Gifting feature in Meego Village. The final mockup for the Gifting feature in Meego Village.

Promotions

When I first took over as Product Lead, it was essential for me to create events that coincided with the user's journey, real world events, and holidays.

We made larger events for special occasions like Halloween and Christmas, and smaller events for St. Patrick's Day, Thanksgiving, and others . These events also required new features, like the gifting feature you may have seen above. All promotions were made after analyzing the metrics to determine where we needed that extra nudge with our users to help boost our KPIs.

Here you can see the Christmas load menu as well as a wireframe for a special promotion targeted at our new users who seemed to be hitting a wall in the first four levels of their journey.

An image of the Christmas load menu for Meego Village. An image of the special promotion offered to new users so they can skip right to Level 5 in Meego Village.

Outcome

The game remained alive for awhile and continued to generate revenue , but was eventually sunset. Due to the technology we built it in, we couldn't feasibly continue adding more items into the game without restructuring the game entirely. It was still one of the most addictive games I've ever played though.

Party in my Dorm S.M.A.S.H. Monsters