Holedown isn't free, but that's partly why it's fun



Martin Jonasson, the creator of the popular ricochet game Holedown , says that the usual business of “freemium” games like cooldowns and consumables rubs him the wrong way. He acknowledges that some games implement free-to-play monetization systems well, but he’s turned off by how they force him to serve “multiple masters.” “You can’t only focus on making the player’s experience positive [under that model]; you have to ensure there’s some money trickling in as well,” he tells me. “That’s a concern I’m happy to avoid.” Focusing on the experience alone has paid off.  Holedown only costs $3.99, but it’s simple and endlessly entertaining. It isn’t hard: Its main challenges deal with learning how to aim and collecting enough crystals to shoot more balls at once and move on to even deeper planets. It’s a “delightful spectacle of bouncing,” in Jonasson’s own words, and I see no reason to dispute them. It relaxes more than it frustrates, in large part because there’s rarely any question that your failures spring from your own mistakes rather than resisting subtle pushes to cash shops. To read this article in full, please click here

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