Developing Games for Android: Best Practices and Design Tips.

The popularity of Android games has grown over the years. The Android platform supports innumerable simple to complex gaming applications. These games are also grabbing a considerable market share. Today users take an interest in every simple or promotional gaming application. Hence, it is safe to say that Android is also one of the simplest platforms to get started with due to its minimal entry barriers and a ready-made market. 

But here’s the best part about Android game development. It is probably easier than you think, and several tools make Android app development easy. So, if you plan to develop games for Android, here is a list of best practices and design tips that can help you. Continue reading to know more!

Best Practices For Developing Android Games

Here are some of the best practices that can make your Android game a hit app:

  • Do not neglect to choose an application’s name till the very last. The application’s name is crucial. Hence, decide it in advance, research its relevance, and avoid duplication.
  • Ensure your game is easy to understand and play. Players should find it easy to pick up the controls and get started without too many instructions.
  • Keep your game’s content updated. Constantly evolve your game so that you get can give players a chance to explore new challenges and opportunities.
  • Engage players with appealing visuals and audio. Make sure your game looks good on all devices the players use. Also, use age-appropriate sound effects, music, and dialogue.
  • Decide and adopt a neat architecture while developing the application. Often long hours of coding make developers frivolous about the upkeep of the code. Dumping in fragments can turn the code into a monster, and that becomes hefty to maintain and test. 
  • Know the successful and trending Android games and what makes them successful. 
  • Do not go overboard with your creativity. Develop a game that the players can understand intuitively and with minimum effort. Use a comprehensive set of design guidelines for Android developers. 
  • Take user feedback seriously and improve the design of your game. You can also use Google Play Store reviews to gain insights.

Design Tips For Developing Android Games

Several game design principles can assist you while developing Android games. Here is a list of ten such design tips that can help you:

Do A Thorough Research

Understand your target audience, their preferences, and how you can build a game that would engage users in your target audience. Many designers often fail to understand what players like and assume the users will like what they draw. So, here is what you can do to make sure your research is thorough:

  • Find gaming apps similar to yours. 
  • Consider what elements of these gaming apps you like and what you do not. Use this information to build your gaming app.
  • Create personas of your users or define your players to create a user-friendly design. 
  • Build a simple prototype of your idea to get valuable feedback at the start. Use this feedback to iterate your prototype so that you finally get the idea that works for your users.

Ensure Your Game Is Accessible To Everyone

Keep in mind that there are different types of players are different. Hence, you must develop your art decisions comprehensively. This approach to design ensures that players with or without impairments enjoy the same game. Here are two tips to make your game accessible:

  • Use leverage high-contrast colours for people with low sight and add icons or elements for people with colour blindness. 
  • Keep the language of your game concise and short to avoid missing out on non-native English speakers among gamers.

Account User Distraction

Often users can be distracted while playing games due to a bad internet connection, incoming calls or a low battery. Make sure you think about what should be your game’s UX. Some games do not close or pause when somebody calls a player. Instead, a small window appears at the top of their screen. It lets them decide between continuing playing or getting on the call.

Add Only Necessary Functions

Design a mobile game interface that is beautiful and functional. Hence, establish the right balance between the game’s layout and features. Adding too many options can distract your players and make their experience horrible. You can improve their in-game experience by analysing the features they use the most and refining them to make these features functional.

Simplify Your Game’s Interface

The UI design of a cluttered mobile game can be overwhelming. Too many additional buttons, icons, and text create a mess. Hence, either remove or do not add elements that can complicate the design or confuse the players. Here are a few tips you need to simplify your game’s interface:

  • Create a simple design.
  • Use one CTA per screen.
  • Avoid filling the screen with unwanted content.
  • Ensure elements like text, images, and icons are straightforward.
  • Leverage white space wisely.
  • Don’t overdo colours.

Fine-Tune Your Game’s Navigation

One of the game design principles is to fine-tune your in-game navigation. The players should find it easy to navigate through the game. Here are a few things you can do to fine-tune your game’s navigation:

  • Ensure the navigation bar, icons, and buttons looks intuitive to users. 
  • Organise all the in-game information for the players to perform a few actions
  • Navigation should not strike the eye but rather look natural.
  • Inform players about their current location so they to navigate the game seamlessly.
  • Ensure all the navigation options are in one place on different screens. 
  • Provide players with logical navigation control from their perspective.

Give Users A Feedback For Their Actions

Players expect the UI elements in a game to respond to their activities. Hence, ensure the player receives feedback after their action. If the elements in your game do not give feedback, players may be confused about whether the touch target is frozen or it was a miss-click. To avoid this, provide a vibration or visual response to the player’s action.

Use Pop-Up Windows With Care

Pop-ups are one of the functional game components. They provide additional information to players. Here are some tips to remember while adding pop-ups to your game:


  • Connect the visible part of the interface with the invisible one using animations. It helps the players understand the origin of the pop-ups.
  • Add a visible yet little darkened background under the pop-ups. As pop-up windows imply that the player(s) must take action, it allows them to understand that game is on pause and they can be back anytime.
  • Keep in mind to use the X symbol accurately. It needs to look prominent, has a good size, and should be in a contrasting colour.

The Bottom Line

You must follow a few best practices to ensure your game is a hit if you are an aspiring mobile game developer. Follow these tips to create high-quality games that players will love. It takes more than just good ideas for your Android games to be successful. It takes hard work and consistent effort. So put in the time and effort to make your Android games hit the mark!

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