The development of Slither.io lasted for about six months. And after its release on March 25, 2016, it immediately got viral popularity. In just three months, the total downloads of the game reached 68 million times, and the browser version was visited every day by 67 million users.
And after 5 years, the game is still popular
In the year of its release, the game simply broke the world charts, for a long time occupying first place in the top of the App Store. It has taken its place in the legion of transcendental free mobile games. It is considered on par with the successful Angry Birds, Fallout4, Flappy Bird.
It has stood the test of time and saved its uniqueness. Simple interface, light mechanics, and a huge range of emotions. Yes, we are talking about Slither.io.
The game was created under the impression of the novelty in the genre of browser games Agario, which was released a year ago. Therefore, their mechanics are very similar. The main rule is simple: devour or you will be devoured by another player.
You compete with other players by growing your snake. The more colorful balls and glowing light you eat, the faster the snake grows. So follow these rules: eat snacks, avoid collisions with other players, and use boosting to be always the first. We know about the game itself, but what is hidden behind the game scene?
What is Slither.io and how does it work?
Let’s go a little deeper into the game mechanics. You have three control modes: moving your finger across the screen, setting the direction; changing direction with a tap on the screen; and the classic joystick. Choose the one you are comfortable with. At the beginning of the game, you choose a skin for your still small snake to stand out on the field. And then the real fight begins.
On the playing field are scattered multi-colored orbs for a snake. At first, it is enough to simply collect the colored spheres scattered across the field and avoid collision with other players. However, if you face one of the 50 game snakes, then the game ends instantly for you. After death, any snake leaves behind scattering orbs, which are brighter and more nutritious, the larger its size. These orbs are the most effective feed. The demand for it is very high, and many other hungry snakes are spinning nearby. Therefore, be dodgy and quick to pick up snacks first.
While your snake is small, you are like a scavenger, collecting orbs on the playing field. But when you get big, change your strategy. The easiest way to get rid of an annoying competitor is to cut him off by swerving sharply to the side at the very last moment. Or create an “emergency” for two other snakes to collide. The larger you are, the more difficult it is to move, but it is easier to get rid of other players.
Another strategy is to wrap another snake in a tight circle. It will have nowhere to move, just bump into you. And you will get nutritious snacks. Use boosting and make the circle tighter so that your target has no chance.
As with many similar games, Slither.io has a rating board. It tracks the top 10 biggest players. Also, you can see the size of your snake in comparison with the leaders. Thus, this game is a kind of struggle for leadership. You have only one chance to beat everyone and take first place in the top. Therefore, be careful and cunning. Other players are also eager to win soon.
Who is the creator of Slither.io?
The game creator is Steven House. He was inspired by the recently released Agario game and decided to create a similar game with simple graphics and light mechanics. After 6 months of development (and financial difficulties) Slither.io went public. This game resembles the good old Snake, which was probably the favorite one in childhood.
As mentioned earlier, Steven had financial difficulties during game development. The developer hardly paid the rent for the apartment. Relying on the game’s success, he also considered taking a regular job at the supermarket. However, the game did not disappoint him. In a short time, Slither.io got big popularity and started to generate revenue.
There are no in-game purchases at Slither.io, however, you can subscribe to none-ad game mode. The subscription price is only $4. The game ads and subscriptions generated over $100,000 in revenue every day.
Despite the sometimes annoying ads in the game, the number of users was constantly growing. The main problem with rapid growth has been the rapid search for large numbers of servers. Especially in places where the popularity just got up. If the server fills up, sometimes when a new player tries to join, everyone else is disconnected. Steven House spent $15,000 a month to maintain and expand servers. Millions of players around the world now have the opportunity to play Slither.io anywhere and anytime.
History of success
Steven House had no money for marketing, so he turned to viral mechanics. At first, new skins for the snake character could be obtained for free by sharing a link to Slither.io on social networks. Later, the developer began to send a game link to the letsplayers. And one fine day Slither.io got to the world-famous PewDiePie.
On his YouTube channel, he posted two review videos for the game, which reached a huge audience. After that, the game «took off». In the first month, downloads reached 4 million worldwide, and App Annie named the project the most downloaded game in April.
The accessibility and freeness of the game appealed to the audience. Besides, everyone wanted to return there again and again because of the simple but addictive gameplay. The game creates excitement and a desire to be a leader, so you can get lost there for several hours.
Over the past five years, many projects have appeared on the network. But none of them, perhaps, can be compared with the success of Slither.io. Since its release, the game has become one of the most downloaded games with a player base of over 100 million gamers around the world. And it continues to be popular. You can download Slither.io to your smartphone or play on a desktop. Have fun, guys!