Com2uS is launching “Mini Game Party” on July 27th. “Mini Game Party” is a game following “Mini Game Paradise”, which is a representative series by Com2uS that dates back to the feature phone era, encompassing five installments. The revival of “Mini Game Paradise” came about as an intern project in 2021, where they were tasked with redeveloping the content of the past title. The positive response from employees to the results spurred the company to embark on an official development journey.
Taking the helm of “Mini Game Party” development is producer Bang Yong-beom, who previously led the development of “Soccer Spirits” while serving as the CEO of BigBall. PD Bang Yong-beom openly expressed his pressure in handling “Mini Game Party” as it represents a significant part of Com2uS's growth history and holds cherished memories for many users. "I remember the comments from grateful users who asked for the revival of Mini Game Paradise," said PD Bang.
How did you come to remake a game that hasn’t been around for more than 10 years?
Mini Game Paradise is an essential game that accompanied Com2uS during its feature phone era and played a pivotal role in its growth. The desire to recreate the game within the company has been long-standing. In 2021, interns were assigned a task to develop small games similar to Mini Game Paradise. Those games received positive feedback during internal testing, leading to discussions about an official release. Consequently, a team of developers, including those who had been involved since the feature phone era, gathered to begin the development process.
The project's direction aimed to preserve the spirit of the original series, evoke nostalgia, and provide a new experience suitable for the smartphone era.
What are the distinguishing features and characteristics of the new installment compared to the previous series?
The key differentiator lies in its subtle distinctiveness. The aim was to maintain the series' artistic and nostalgic appeal without appearing too dated. It's what we call the "newtro" style. Character designs and backgrounds have been preserved in their original form, while the UI has been refined for a cleaner look. The first impression of the game is neat, but once played, it immerses players in the nostalgia of the past. We ensured that even those unfamiliar with the feature phone era can comfortably enjoy the game.
Additionally, we introduced a new food system that enhances gameplay. Players can collect food in the game, each offering situational effects. For example, some games grant a boost in jump height or magnetic effects to attract nearby items. We paid attention to designing these features to be accessible for players playing Mini Game Party for the first time.
The original gameplay on feature phones involved physical buttons, creating a unique tactile experience. With no physical buttons on smartphones, how did you recreate the tactile experience?
Recreating the tactile experience proved to be the first challenge we faced when official development began. During the feature phone era, players enjoyed the unique feeling of pressing the "5-button" for game control. However, with no physical buttons on smartphones, replicating this experience seemed impossible.
To address this issue, adding physical buttons was not a feasible solution. Instead, we utilized the smartphone's haptic feedback function, which allows for step-by-step adjustments of vibrations. Depending on the situation, we applied light or heavy vibrations, aligning them contextually.
While it may not precisely replicate the tactile experience, in the prototype phase, the gameplay felt somewhat slow. Analyzing the cause, we realized that feature phone screens were smaller, whereas modern smartphone screens are much larger. As a result, the same gameplay felt slower than before. To strike a balance without compromising the overall gameplay experience, we increased the play speed accordingly.
How extensive will the content be upon launch?
In terms of numbers, Mini Game Party will feature 13 mini-games, 53 characters, and 460 costumes. The costumes offer not only visual changes but also performance alterations. In addition to the classic "School Championship," we are preparing MBTI Battles, Blood Type Battles, and other trendy modes. The Clan system will be introduced at launch, although Clan Battles are temporarily excluded. We plan to implement Clan Battles shortly after the launch. Moreover, a brand-new mini-game called “Fly High” will debut during the launch period, also an idea suggested by an intern.
After the launch, we will rotate between re-releasing existing mini-games and introducing new ones in subsequent updates, with a consideration for a 2 to 3-month update cycle.
Given the performance-based variations in characters, does this tie into the gacha Business Model?
The Business Model (BM) is indeed related to characters, but character acquisition isn't solely limited to gacha mechanics. Characters can be obtained as in-game rewards. Furthermore, character growth is not exclusively based on the BM; it is achieved through gameplay. The design is tailored for casual gameplay.
How did you select the mini games for launch?
We focused on maintaining the game's rhythm. As we transitioned into the era of short-form content, we also ensured that playing a single game wouldn't take too long. The games were designed to last approximately one minute for beginners, three minutes for intermediate players, and not exceeding ten minutes for expert players.
What will be the priority update for the development team?
Alongside frequent mini-game updates, the addition of a battle mode is a priority. However, there is an ongoing debate regarding whether to display opponents on the same screen or divide it into two screens to show each player separately.
We are eager to incorporate global real-time multiplayer features, and we also plan to introduce Bluetooth multiplayer battles quickly. We are looking forward to seeing university students enjoying games together via Bluetooth during university MTs (membership training).
What is appealing about Mini Game Party to you?
It's the essence of pure enjoyment. I believe Mini Game Party embodies the fundamental and primal essence of gaming. In smartphone games, button presses dictate when to press, how long to press, and which buttons to press. In Mini Game Party, the control is reduced to a single button press. The game's simplicity offers tremendous fun and pleasure to players.
Since the idea originated from an intern, would you consider accepting ideas from users through contests or similar events for new mini-games?
We are fully open to such possibilities. However, the specific design of how we would accept ideas has not been formalized. When we are ready, we will implement such events.
What are the internal expectations of Com2uS regarding Mini Game Party?
We anticipate qualitative evaluations more than quantitative achievements. Personally, I see Mini Game Party as a game that will invoke nostalgia, recalling the golden age of casual games in Com2uS's history. It's a tribute to old-school gamers who have fond memories of the past Mini Game Paradise
The game will be globally launched with the use of XPLA (Com2uS's virtual currency). Will there be any differences between the domestic and international versions?
In terms of gameplay, there won't be any differences between the domestic and international versions. Briefly explaining the blockchain system of Mini Game Party, players earn "Gold Medals" as in-game currency while playing. These Gold Medals can be used to obtain limited skins and drive the in-game economy. This aspect remains the same for both domestic and international versions.
However, the blockchain system will also reward players daily with tokens based on the total number of Gold Medals. While the utility of tokens is similar, they can be converted to XPLA. The gameplay experience is identical for all users; the only difference lies in whether players choose to convert tokens to XPLA.
Com2uS's P2O (Play to Own) design ensures that players can fully enjoy the game without having to rely on XPLA. The game is thoughtfully crafted to avoid disadvantaging any users based on their choice to convert tokens.
The original Mini Game Paradise had various collaboration events. Are there plans for similar collaborations in the future?
The art team's initial task was to restore characters from the past, followed by creating collaboration characters from Com2uS games. This process is ongoing, including the restoration of existing collaboration characters like "Bungeo-ppang Tycoon", "Action Puzzle Family", and "Super Action Hero". Additionally, we are working on introducing characters from titles like "Tiny Farm", "Ace Fishing", and "Summoners War", which were not featured in the previous installments. In the new Mini Game Party, several collaboration characters can be obtained through hidden missions.
Notably, we are also restoring the BGM from Mini Game Paradise 1 to 5, which can be obtained through hidden missions as well. This integration of old BGM with the new Mini Game Paradise promises an enjoyable and nostalgic experience.
Do you have a message for the users that have been waiting for Mini Game Party?
In response to an advertisement video and promotional video for the new Mini Game Party, one user commented, "I've been waiting so long. No matter what, I will definitely play it. Thank you, Com2uS." This comment reflects the fact that Mini Game Paradise is a game cherished by both developers and players, evoking fond memories. We have worked diligently to honor the legacy of the original developers and ensure that user expectations are met without causing any disappointment. Of course, there is an enormous responsibility, but we have dedicated ourselves wholeheartedly, whether it be a long or short development time. Beyond the launch, we will continue to make rapid improvements and address any shortcomings. I ask for your love and support for Mini Game Party.