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How Online Gaming Platform Play Games24x7 Uses Advanced Analytics & ML To Up Its Game

How Online Gaming Platform Play Games24x7 Uses Advanced Analytics & ML To Up Its Game

Richa Bhatia

The Indian online gaming industry is expected to become a $1 billion opportunity for India by 2021 with around 190 million gamers engaging in online games, thereby fueling growth, suggests a KPMG report. With an increased smartphone penetration and a young demographic of over 350 million, India is a viable market for gaming companies.

Analytics India Magazine caught up with Sachin Uppal, chief marketing officer at Play Games24x7 Pvt. Ltd, the largest provider of online and mobile games in India. Play Games24x7 Pvt. Ltd is the parent company and has two flagship brands, RummyCircle and Ultimate Games. The company claims a user base of over eight million rummy players on RummyCircle. In this article, Uppal shares Play  Games24x7’s analytics strategy and how it is used to drive customer acquisition, personalisation, revenue maximisation.

Sachin Uppal,CMO, Play Games24x7 Pvt. Ltd

Recognising the importance of data, Uppal shared how the gaming company has built several in-house proprietary solutions to capture data. “We have dedicated servers capturing data in real time and provide analytics dashboards for all stakeholders to monitor key metrics real-time,” he said.

Through constant investments into leveraging data, the company has also built a real-time marketing platform that allows the team to segment users and run targeted data-driven campaigns on all channels. “This platform is like Google Analytics and Adobe Marketing Suite put together. It has capabilities to do user-level end-to-end tracking with real-time segmentation, cross-device marketing and multichannel communication. And A/B testing is a core part of the entire product journey,” he added.

The Tech Stack

Play Games24x7 has a diverse tech stack with a microservices architecture. Their 30-member business intelligence and data science team uses several databases and languages. Depending on the type of data and the access to data required, the team uses databases like SQL, NoSQL, Hive, Mongo DB, Cassandra, Hadoop and Dynamo DB, among others. The main programming languages used are dependent on use cases. The team primarily uses R, Python, Java, Javascript, Html5, CSS, NodeJS, React, Native Android and iOS. “Our BI team enables all stakeholders with frameworks and platforms for making data available in a usable and actionable form… While our Data Science team helps in building descriptive and predictive models with state-of-the-art machine learning and AI algorithms to deliver unparalleled intelligence,” shared Uppal.

Talking about the recruitment process and key skills required for data analysts at Play Games24x7, he said, “We are constantly looking for highly motivated individuals who are willing to learn and contribute in a fast-moving environment.”

Identifying Potential Churners With A/B Testing

Even though gaming is on a rise in India with steady growth in consumption volumes, the industry has become extremely competitive with companies adopting advanced technologies to improve the gamers’ engagement, paying propensity and drive user retention. For example, identifying potential churners is an important use case in the gaming industry and its benefits are twofold — it improves retention rates and can also drive monetisation strategies.

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Uppal said that their in-house real-time segmentation engines and ML-based models are developed to identify potential churners and give a real-time limited offer to improve the retention. Through segmentation, the team identifies players who are one-timers and who are likely to return. Using the model, the team performs an a priori segmentation of players into fence-sitters and enthusiasts. The fence sitters were further divvied up into two groups with the test group getting an offer after it achieved a statistical significance of 99 percent. The team made a real-time offer to the relevant audience, thereby boosting ROI significantly.

Machine Learning At Play Games24x7

To capitalise on the mindshare, wallet share and increase online engagement, gaming companies are using emergent tech for greater revenue realisation. To making the user’s gameplay experience immersive and smooth, Play Games24x7 uses ML to personalise player’s gaming journey and offer deeper engagement.

Personalised player journey: The analytics team uses ML models to understand the player preferences regarding the type of games, entry fee patterns and communication mode approaches that should be used to deliver a seamless personalised experience.

Risk Management: To ensure a healthy gaming experience, the analytics team prompt gamers about excessive gameplay patterns. Such interventions in gameplay helps gamers stay in control of their time and spends.

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