Australia’s Halfbrick Studios brought its hit iOS and Android title, Fruit Ninja, to Facebook this summer in the form of Fruit Ninja Frenzy. This ought to go a long way toward eliminating knock offs made by other developers.
According to our traffic tracking service AppData, Fruit Ninja Frenzy currently has 680,000 monthly active users and 90,000 daily active users.
Like the original iOS release — which has since spawned a spin-off, Fruit Ninja: Puss in Boots — Fruit Ninja Frenzy revolves around a slicing mechanic. Where mobile players used their device’s touchscreen for input, the Facebook title has them moving their mouse pointer in order to cut flying fruit in mid-air. The pretense for the gameplay is that players are ninja training in a dojo using fruit as targets. The game features a charming old sensei that dispenses sage knowledge (but mostly fruit facts) to hit pupils. Players earn soft currency (here called Fruit Juice) based on how well they perform.
Fruit Ninja Frenzy also adds the special bananas found in the mobile version’s arcade mode to the mix. When sliced, they activate time-limited power-ups, including a timer freeze and rapid-fire flurry of fruit. The later is especially helpful in completing combos — multiple fruit slices in a single swipe — which add up thanks to score multipliers. Bombs in this release don’t end the game; rather, they deduct 10 points from the player’s total score for the game if accidentally sliced. At the end of the match, the number of fruit sliced is added to any special bonuses from achievements to tally the player’s final score.
In terms of social features, the game offers a real-time friend leaderboard, sharing of high scores via viral channels, and a number of achievements to unlock. Players can also choose to post messages promoting Fruit Ninja Frenzy to their Facebook Walls.
Where Fruit Ninja Frenzy really departs from its mobile parent is in the virtual goods monetization. This takes the form of Smoothie power-up items, which can be used to eliminate bombs or add extra time to the 60-second-per-round limit, and so on. Smoothies are single-use items that the player has to spend both hard and soft currency to create — first spending premium Starfruit currency on Smoothie recipes and then spending Fruit Juice to actually create the Smoothie. When first starting out, players can choose only one smoothie per game, but are able to unlock up to two additional Smoothie slots using Starfruit. Outside of gameplay, players can use Starfruit to change the dojo background and the way the actual swipe of the slicing action looks.
Speaking to Inside Social Games, Halfbrick executive producer Duncan Curtis reveals some of the company’s future plans for Fruit Ninja Frenzy on Facebook. These include connectivity with the mobile versions of the game, potentially utilizing Facebook Connect, to synchronize scores and other data. This would go along with the mobile versions adopting the new Frenzy mode features introduced in this Facebook incarnation of the game. Future versions of Frenzy will also utilize Adobe’s Flash Player 11 and hardware acceleration for smoother gameplay and improved visuals. Real-time competitive multiplayer is in the cards for the title as well, but Halfbrick will likely roll out asynchronous competitive features to encourage high score based rivalries between friends in the shorter-term. The developer also plans to launch the game in more countries for a wider audience.
You can follow Fruit Ninja Frenzy’s progress using AppData, our traffic tracking service for social games and developers.