Easter brings "month-long hackathon," growth to Hatchlings

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Posted: Saturday, March 30, 2013 12:00 am

Hatchlings promotes an Easter-themed "Power Hour," a time at which egg hunting is faster for users.

Though the Hatchlings team has no set office hours, its team of 10 has been putting in a lot of extra time in preparation for the holiday that served as an inspiration for the game.

"It's been pretty hectic," creator Brad Dwyer said earlier this week. "I mean, I kind of enjoy it. It's like a month-long hackathon."

Historically, the month leading up to Easter has been the game's "big time for growth," said Dwyer, who launched the game in 2008.

"What we've found is that people are willing to play the game year-round, but it's a lot easier to convince people to try it out now."

Generally, Hatchlings releases one new egg series each week, or about one new egg every day. During the Easter season though, the game releases anywhere from two to three new series a week, with a few series being released on Easter.

To keep up with the increased number of egg releases, Hatchlings recently hired two additional freelance artists. At any time there are four to five different artists from across the country designing eggs and content for Hatchlings.

"It's been neat to see all of the different artistic styles coming out in their different eggs," Dwyer (right) said. 

Hatchlings users who buy more than $300 worth of game credits at once also have the opportunity to receive up to $140 in additional game credits.

Along with an increased number of eggs and sales on in-game purchases, Hatchlings is rolling out other promotions for their busiest time of year.

"We're trying to do lots of things for new users that also benefit existing ones," Dwyer said.

Outside of the Easter season, the Hatchlings team introduces new eggs and design features to keep users interested and engaged. There are currently over 1,700 different types of eggs for users to find.

"Let's say you join this week," Dwyer said. "By the time Easter rolls around on Sunday, you will probably not even be 10 percent through all of the eggs that have come out."

Earlier this year Hatchlings left beta mode of its latest version just in time for its fifth birthday, and the game's user numbers have only continued to rise—it surpassed more than 50,000 new users for the month of March.

The game also was featured on Facebook's list of trending internal games and apps, causing Hatchlings to average about 4,000 new users a day.

"We continuously release new content and keep people engaged so hopefully they're hooked," Dwyer said.


Credits: Hatchlings promotion images from Hatchlings on FacebookBrad Dwyer photo by Anna Jones and Phillip Harder / Thinc Iowa.

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