Since the GameAnalytics service officially launched this year, we have been deploying the improvements that we brought to our tool in a fairly quiet manner.
This month, with the launch of two new hot features, Browser Heatmaps and Email Reports, it is time to highlight how your experience with GameAnalytics has gradually become sleeker and more pleasurable.
Heatmaps – now accessible anywhere
Heatmaps now have their own dashboard. The static landing page in the Heatmap dashboards has been substituted with a fully-featured heatmap renderer which is powered by the Unity web-player. All the settings that were available in the Unity GA_Heatmap object inside Unity are now also available in your browser. This eliminates the need to have Unity installed on the devices of users who require heatmap statistics.
The only prerequisite for starting to use this feature is to initially upload your game’s level architecture to the GameAnalytics servers. So keep a developer close to set everything up.
PS: with this occasion, filtering by builds is finally supported in the Heatmaps tool, both in the browser and in the latest version of the Unity package
With the new Email Reports, you can check the vital signs of your game on the go, directly from your inbox. Only log into the GameAnalytics dashboard when you really need to.
Email reports are accessible to all users who have administrative rights and can be sent to users defined for a specific game, as well as to external third parties. At this time, GameAnalytics provides Email Reports in three predefined formats, with metrics carefully picked for each timeframe:
Up to this point, GameAnalytics only allowed the download of RAW data through accessing the Game Settings. In case you missed it when it creeped into the tool last month, you now have the ability to also export data from the Explore Dashboard to CSV format, in a WYSIWYG manner.
Build Comparison for A/B testing
A/B testing can be used effectively in game design and development, because it allows the rapid testing of design decisions on usually no more than 5% of the game’s user base. You can use A/B testing to:
- tweak level difficulty (by adjusting enemy health, character physics, level fail timers etc.)
- improve social sign on rate for freemium games, product registration rate for traditional games or plain user registration rate
- experiment with different in-game shop promotions
- and more
In addition, if you are a small developer you usually cannot afford a dedicated team of game testers. A/B testing does not only help you save some money, but ultimately brings you closer to the real-life scenario. Professional game testers, unlike the majority of Facebook game players, have an acquired taste which might distort your test results.
Because A/B Testing was one of the most requested feature for the GameAnalytics tool, we decided to make it possible through our build comparison feature, which was also released last month in the Explore tool. With a bit of coding magic that can randomly assign players to different test groups, you can now make use of the custom event build field to analyze the impact of subtle code/visual variations.
Unity package updates
Our Unity coder has been working hard to prepare the Unity package for the new Heatmaps format. However, he never forgot of the usual bug-fixing and experience tweaking. You can see all the improvements that were brought to the package on our Support forum (v.0.4.4 and v.0.4.2)