In Tennis Clash’s Ace Academy, players spin a slot machine that awards new abilities for characters—but only if players land a special symbol on each of the machine’s three reels. To ensure that winning doesn’t depend entirely on luck, spins also fill a meter next to the reels that increases players’ chances of winning an ability at milestones and awards an ability when complete. Although many gacha mechanics contain some kind of mercy system, it’s rare for apps to make these systems explicit, let alone a prominent component of the UI.
In this report, we analyze how Ace Academy uses this mercy system to provide a clear sense of progression, and how Tennis Clash designed its new character abilities to be meaningful but not overpowered.
Breakout and Soft-Launch Apps
Football Head Coach 23 is the second football management app that we’ve covered in 2023, the other being The Program in our Jan. ‘23 Racing & Sports Report. Whereas The Program focuses on college football and uses purely fictional teams and athletes, Head Coach centers on pro football and uses athletes with names that are phonetically similar to the names of real NFL athletes.
Supernova Football draws inspiration from popular squad RPGs like AFK Arena for its core loop, its features, and even its UI. Developer Wildlife has several top apps in the core market and one in the sports market (Tennis Clash), so Supernova Football will be a solid test of whether there is a market for sports management-themed RPGs.
Innovative Features and Events
This month’s noteworthy releases include a mode in which players knock out other racers in Need for Speed No Limits, a team competition involving simulated racesin KartRider Rush+, and a club competition with leagues in Fishing Clash.
Download the February Racing & Sports Report for our complete analysis.