Gardenscapes: New Acres

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Gardenscapes: New Acres
Gardenscapes icon.png
The protagonist, Austin the Butler.
Developer(s)Playrix
Publisher(s)Playrix
SeriesGardenscapes
Platform(s)Android, iOS, Facebook Platform
ReleaseAndroid
  • NA: July 5, 2016
iOS
  • NA: August 25, 2016
Genre(s)Puzzle
Mode(s)Single-player

Gardenscapes is a casual match-3 game, which was released first in Playrix's Scapes series in 2016 for Android and iOS devices and also on Facebook.[1]

Gameplay[edit]

Originally launched on PC, Gardenscapes was a hidden objects game in which the player runs a B&B hotel. According to VentureBeat, a mobile version was in development for over four years and was released in 2016 as a combination of match-3 gameplay with a city-building core. The storyline is centered on a butler named Austin, who strives to rebuild the dilapidated mansion and garden.[2] To complete the chores, the user must complete levels and earn the required "stars". Gardenscapes allows players to choose decorations for cleaned-up areas of a massively overgrown garden as they level up. The core gameplay is completed with pin-pulling mini-games in which players need to solve puzzles to save characters.[3][4]

Playrix regularly releases seasonal updates, for example, Christmas Collaterals.[5] In addition, in 2021, they launched Yoga Season in collaboration with the World Health Organization. The storyline describes recommendations on how to stay healthy while self-isolating.[6][7][5]

Commercial and sequels[edit]

The player needs to match three of the same fruit in either vertically or horizontally to clear the fruits. The player may use the Power-Ups to ease their gameplay.

After the release, Gardenscapes was named one of the Top-10 free games for iPhone and iPad in 100 countries. The project was released not only on the App Store, where on the first day it was downloaded more than a million times but also on Google Play and Amazon Appstore. Gardenscapes was named by Facebook its Overall Game of the Year for 2016. As a result, the developers entered the Top-20 mobile publishers in the world.[8][9]

By 2019, Gardenscapes was named the fifth highest-grossing puzzle game generating $1.5 billion from in-app purchases. The total number of app installs exceeded 213 million. An average revenue per install was about $7, making it one of the lead publisher's games. Google Play users have accounted for 70 percent of Gardenscapes' downloads and contributed 47 percent of overall revenue.[10]

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Gardenscapes' audience was over 10 million daily active players.[6] Sensor Tower estimated that Gardenscapes made almost $2 billion in lifetime revenue by 2021.[2][7] According to Statista, as of May 2021, the game remained the Playrix's most downloaded product with over 461.41 million total downloads.[11]

The success of the original game led to a series of sequels, such as Gardenscapes 2. A year after the release of Gardenscapes in 2016, the developers also launched a similar project - Homescapes, in which the main character returns to his childhood mansion and tries to restore it.[12][13]

Critics[edit]

Since 2016 Playrix has been running an active marketing strategy. However, Facebook advertisements for Gardenscapes and Homescapes were referred to as misleading and "not representative" at the beginning of 2020. Developers declared that the promoted images of gameplay captured mini-games available every 20 levels. Therefore, most of the audience didn’t see it, stopping at the lower levels. The Advertising Standards Authority banned banners in October 2020 and warned Playrix about the representativity of other campaigns.[14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Playrix has become Europe's quiet giant in mobile gaming". VentureBeat. 2016-11-23. Retrieved 2020-07-28.
  2. ^ a b "Russian brothers behind 'Gardenscapes' emerge as lockdown winners". Financial Times. 2020-05-24. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  3. ^ "Gardenscapes, Homescapes Advertisements Banned by UK Regulator for Being Misleading". Gadgets360. 2020-10-13. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  4. ^ "Deconstructing Gardenscapes". Mobilefreetoplay. 2021. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  5. ^ a b "A case of positive incrementality with Playrix's Gardenscapes". Remerge. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  6. ^ a b "Playrix, with WHO input, launches Yoga Season event for its Gardenscapes online gaming community". CISION. 2021-04-15. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  7. ^ a b "Playrix, with WHO input, launches Yoga Season event for its Gardenscapes online gaming community". The Associated Press. 2021-04-15. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  8. ^ "Playrix: «Gardenscapes Has 3,5M DAU»". WN Media Group. 2016-11-23. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  9. ^ "Match 3 from Playrix collected over 1 million downloads in a day and hit the Top 150 grossing iOS games in the USA". WN Media Group. 2016-08-26. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  10. ^ "Gardenscapes' Lifetime Revenue Grows to $1.5 Billion". SensorTower. 2019-12-19. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  11. ^ "Number of lifetime downloads generated by leading Playrix mobile games worldwide as of May 2021". Statista. 2021. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  12. ^ "How the Buchman brothers built one of the largest gaming companies in the world - Playrix - and became billionaires". Forbes (in Russian). 2020-03-19. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  13. ^ "Charting the rise of Russian mobile gaming powerhouse Playrix". Steel Media. 2017-05-17. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  14. ^ "Homescapes and Gardenscapes ads banned as misleading". BBC News. 2020-10-12. Retrieved 2021-08-08.

External links[edit]