Socialgamesobserver

The Latest News on the Social Games Market in Europe and Emerging Markets

14May/12

Game of the Week – Bubble Speed: Underwater Bubble Shooter Keeps GameDuell Afloat on Facebook

By Regina Leuwer

Bubbles appear to be a fail-proof formula for Facebook games – with King.com’s Bubble Witch Saga as the most impressive example. Last week, Zynga released Bubble Safari, and when searching for the keyword ‘Bubble’ in our AppStats database more than 20 apps pop up.
This week’s game of the week Bubble Speed has gained traction during the last few weeks and is GameDuell’s most successful game on Facebook – attracting more users than the Berlin-based developers other nine titles combined.

Title: Bubble Speed
Developer GameDuell
Genre: Arcade
Languages: English
Platform(s): Facebook, iOS, Web
Launch: 2011
Active users (Facebook): 380,000 DAU; 2,100,000 MAU

How to play

Bubble Speed is built on the core game loop of match-three bubble shooters – players aim at bubbles with a bubble cannon to hit three or more of the same color.

In Bubble Speed, the scenario is set under water which not only makes a lot of sense but also provides nice sound effects and graphical elements like the game’s character named Quippy who slightly resembles a hermit crab. Quippy guides players through the tutorial and cheers for them when they are successful.

A game session lasts 60 seconds in which as many bubbles as possible need to be destroyed. Unlike Bubble Witch Saga or Bubble Island, the progress of leveling up isn’t visualized by a map: In fact there aren’t actual levels in Bubble Speed, only varying difficulties and bubble patterns set in front of a non-changing background. Social features are reduced to a weekly leaderboard of Facebook friends.

Boosters such as the color squid (to change bubble colors), time extensions or bombs to clear lines are available for the game’s currency Coins, available via Facebook Credits. As usual, players have limited lives which refill over time or can be bought with Credits as well.
Even though player’s are now and again prompted to invite friends, Bubble Speed’s gameplay is very unobtrusive. The Caribbean music and underwater theme set a mellow and relaxing atmosphere that apparently resonates well with female social gamers.