Roman Remez: “It’s desirable to understand monetization even before game development”

Written by Tappx
Created Jul 24, 2023 - Updated Jul 27, 2023

In this interview, we talk to Roman Remez. He has extensive experience as Business Developer in the gaming sector, especially in casual games, and now works as Lead Business Development Manager at Playcus. This is a company that unites developers and has 25 games and counting since its founding in 2011 with more than 30 million users worldwide. We talk about it and everything that is happening in the industry. Keep reading.

How are you doing, Roman? Thanks for your time for this interview.

I’m doing great, especially after an enjoyable event and getting acquainted with your specialist. Thank you for the opportunity, esteemed Tappx, an AdTech firm that offers innovative app monetization, user acquisition, and advertising solutions for mobile publishers, app developers, and advertisers. A perfect blend of tech, soul, and logic.

As you said, you were recently at GamesSummit Warsaw with our colleague Linh Le speaking on the panel about pricing and monetization strategies. Any interesting learnings you took away from there?

It was fascinating to hear the perspectives from various sectors of the industry and to examine the panel’s subject matter comprehensively. The most intriguing part from my viewpoint was a review of upcoming trends and the current evaluation of AI solutions’ prospects and development. While a Skynet-type scenario may not be possible yet, AI significantly accelerates many processes.

You are a regular attendee of industry events and webinars. Why do you think it is important to be up-to-date and do networking?

I recently had a conversation with colleagues offstage about this very topic, and we emphasized the importance of networking. Often, a network of contacts can help achieve results faster and more efficiently when approached correctly. The world is like a large house where everyone knows each other, if not directly, then through mutual acquaintances. Additionally, staying up-to-date and engaging in networking provides an opportunity to discuss immediate and future changes in the industry.

A network of contacts can help achieve results faster and more efficiently.

I can imagine that being a Business Developer must be quite a challenge. Don’t you think it is getting more difficult every day, since the market is a bit saturated?

Just as the blacksmith’s craft was once very popular, but not every blacksmith became well-known. I think every profession reaches a point of saturation at some time. I believe that constant development and self-improvement never hurt anyone, and networking helps gain the golden experience of others in the field in which you’re progressing.

What is the most important skill in your job and why problem-solving? hehe

Thank you for noticing that on my LinkedIn profile. I believe that in every field there are situations where it is critically important to solve problems optimally. They arise, and it’s part of the path of business development. Optimal solutions and experience accumulation allow for effectively avoiding them in the future. I think that when asking a billionaire how they earned their first billion, it’s worth focusing on the details of how they didn’t earn their first million or first hundred million, and then, with experience, they overcame previous barriers.

What do you see as the greatest opportunity in the gaming industry at this moment?

Game development is the land of dreams, much like the U.S. slogan, it’s an industry of possibilities. Therefore, I believe the path to creating your own project and bringing it to the top still exists. It’s an interesting question because opportunities vary across different sectors. Predicting the future, even with precise data, does not rule out the possibility of black swan events. I think the development of AI can significantly improve the quality of both startup and professional projects. I’d like to see how this can help more people realize their unique genre ideas.


How to choose the best SSP for publishers

Speaking of monetization, what are the essentials for a winning strategy?

There is no single key that unlocks all doors of monetization. It has to be tailored uniquely for each project. As we discussed in the panel, it is desirable to understand the monetization scheme even before starting game development. In the future, you can make subtle changes through A/B testing, but not too drastic or abrupt.

By the way, what is a successful casual or hyper-casual game for you?

First and foremost, it’s a game that is enjoyable to play. Also, a project that skillfully combines the player’s journey with profitability for the developer.

For our publishing department, we are looking for various projects. But those with a Day 1 retention rate of over 30% and a playtime of more than 20 minutes have the greatest potential. In this case, a CPI around 1 dollar won’t be critical with such metrics.

A successful game is one that is enjoyable to play and combines the player’s journey with profitability for the developer.

Assuming that user experience is one of the keys to success, how do you work on it? Data and customer feedback are a must, right?

Yes, user experience is indeed one of the main drivers. Our time is very valuable, so it’s much more interesting to spend it playing engaging games. Looking at Archero, we see how the project continues to lead in its genre because it’s appealing to players. All projects that want to be similar can’t keep up with the pace of implementing innovations. When a game is released, Archero is already three months ahead in terms of interest. Therefore, players see no reason to switch games, as it’s constantly updated, and their progress only accumulates without becoming boring.

In an industry as changing and constantly evolving as gaming, do you think long-term is possible or do you prefer to work in the short-term?

From an industry perspective, I think it’s optimal to have a long-term strategic plan for 10, 5, and 3 years. However, it’s also essential to have a tactical plan, as there are many changes in the field, and adapting to them is very important. This is because the industry is sensitive to changes.

To what extent, can games improve people’s lives and inspire humanity?

If you take a bus ride in the evening, you might notice many people playing games on their phones to pass the time and maximize their enjoyment. Games are like magical doors to a world that is not always as we want it to be. It’s wonderful to periodically enter this world through games. Let’s play games, not engage in the destruction of humanity! It’s a wonderful slogan and initiative for the gradual reduction and disappearance of aggression, negativity, and wars.

You know that the question about Artificial Intelligence is almost mandatory today. What do you think could be its greatest contribution to gaming?

In terms of game development, I believe this ties into my previous statement about the benefits for beginners and experienced people. Projects could become technically more perfect through a large amount of automation and AI solutions. But room for creativity will always remain.

If artificial intelligence becomes fully realized, it could create the most interesting game that evolves and progresses at an unprecedented speed. From our current perspective in the tech world, there are certain “questions” about how quickly a fully developed AI could outpace us in development and how it would regard humanity. With this in mind, the 2014 movies Transcendence and Lucy may seem like very positive scenarios.

T: Thank you Roman for the talk. It was a great pleasure!

Thank you for your time and the interview, the format is interesting! I would be happy to discuss other topics with you one-on-one in the future.

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