Ruslan Kapustin from Skywell Software talked about Wizzzi, AR game-based loyalty program for retailers and discussed the use of gamification as a tool to achieve business goals.
Gamification has become a business tool that retailers are relying on to achieve their business objectives. The interactive and immersive features of the gameplay enhance the shopping experience and motivate customers to keep coming back to make more purchases to achieve various rewards. Today we would like to tell you about a loyalty program that we created for one of our clients, called Wizzi. As we will see later on, there were many technical challenges that needed to be resolved to create this game, but in the end, we were able to deliver exactly what the client was looking for to help them increase user retention rates and other business goals. Before we get into all of this, let’s take a look at some background information about what Wizzzi actually is.
What is Wizzzi?
Wizzzi is an AR multi-player game we created for one of our retail clients. It consists of 26 unique characters in the magic world. As many as 4 players could compete and interact with each other in the magic world. In fact, we even hired a professional story writer to create the legend of the magic world. There was also a set of collectible cards that the shoppers could collect upon making a purchase. We created an AR app that allows the characters on the cards to come to life which offered a lot of excitement for the users. For example, they could take a photo or video of themselves with the character or have their character fight another one in AR and many other possibilities. As you can imagine, creating such an AR game presents several technological challenges, and let’s explore them in greater detail.
How Was Wizzzi Created?
We already mentioned that there are a total of 26 characters and as many as 4 players could compete with each other but all of this needs to be available at 30 frames per second. This meant that the list of supported devices started from:
- Android phone:
- 3 RAM
- Android 7 (Nougat)
- Qualcomm SDM636 Snapdragon 636
- iPhone 5 and above
The recommended specs were:
- Android phone:
- 4 RAM
- Android 9.0 (Pie)
- Qualcomm SDM660 Snapdragon 660
- iPhone 8 and above
As you can imagine, creating a full-fledged wizard universe that works at even 30 FPS is quite challenging. Also, we could not have a lot of polygons and joints (if there is animation) for correct and fast work since this could be problematic in 30 FPS. The client requested that we avoid placing any hidden objects in the scenes and we couldn’t use any constraints, only joints and blend shapes. The polygon count should not be more than 10000 triangles for characters with VFX (three unique magic abilities).
Crafting the Solution
When creating the 3D aspect of the game, we baked the physical properties of the materials into one texture map. The scene was further optimized by limiting the scene size to 100,000 triangles to meet the requirements of the client. The model has one UV set with a texture size of 1K. Image tracing was done with Wikitude with up to 5 meters of tracking distance. It also offered us an average marker size of 5 kilobytes for local storage which were usually stored as a .png or .jpg file with sizes as little as 2 MB. Another advantage of using Wikitude was the multiple-image tracking ability to have identical playing cards (image targets). This feature removes constraints that limit other similar augmented reality solutions out there.
In the end, we created a fully functional real-time multiplayer game for 4 players with the ability to collect points and enhance the characteristics of heroes. Users were able to enjoy Wizzzi even on smartphones that cost as little as $200 on average.
Delivering Business Results With a Technical Solution
As a result of successful development and implementation, the client was able to increase their overall retention rate, purchase frequency, and the amount of the average purchase. It also allowed them to build stronger and longer-lasting relationships with their customers by providing them with experiences that cannot be found anywhere else. This is actually one of the most important factors customers use when deciding where to shop since they have seemingly endless possibilities to choose from as far as retailers are concerned. In fact, there have been numerous studies done that show that even a small increase in customer loyalty can pay huge dividends over the long haul.
If you are looking to build emotional connections with your customers, win their trust and loyalty or simply increase brand awareness, gamification is definitely the right way to go. Our 3D specialist team at Skywell Software has an extensive track record of creating games that meet the needs of retailers and companies in other industries as well. All of this experience has provided us with insider knowledge and expertise that allow us to meet and exceed customer expectations in a wide variety of circumstances and limitations as demonstrated in the example of Wizzzi. Regardless of how bold or daring your vision is, we have the expertise to make it a reality.