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Lightweight Models & Cost-Effective Scalability

This is the last Web 2.0 pattern from Tim O’Reilly. This pattern give small developers opportunity to be a large organization. It is very cheap to start Web 2.0 business. Development cost is not that high and the server cost is free or very cheap if you have only a few traffics. If you have some amazing ideas you can start your own business right away. You need to act fast since it is easy to put your idea into Web 2.0 and it is very fast to copy your work too. For example, Twitter is not hard to develop but since it is already have large user base not many people want to compete with Twitter. Zynga also develop lots of games using ideas from others people proving better graphic, add more features, and together with large users base they actually get lots of market share from the original games. This is why you need to act fast. Get your idea into action as fast as possible and build your users base fast so that no one can steal your ideas to make money.


BEEWORKS GAMES is a game company specialize in mobile devices with touch screen such as NDS, 3DS, Android, and iOS. BEEWORKS GAMES start their business with “Touch Detective“(Alternately “Osawari Tantei”) series on NDS. They move to mobile phone devices market with “SamuraiEnbu” on iOS at 29/10/2010. They continue to release more games to Android and iOS devices which are mostly related to “Touch Detective” series such as “Mushroom Garden” series. They also release game to 3DS device called “Osawari Tantei Nameko Daihanshoku“.

“Touch Detective” has been ported from NDS to iOS at 4/8/2011 and to Android at 27/12/2012. “Funghi“(Alternately “Nameko”), a mushroom character from “Touch Detective” has been the main focus of BEEWORKS GAMES products such as “Mushroom Garden“, “Mushroom Garden Seasons“, and “Mushroom Garden Deluxe“. They also create a website called Funghi Paradise which contain every information about “Funghi” character including “Funghi” related games information .

About Funghi-Funghi Paradise-Funghi Official Web Site

The popularity from “Touch Detective” series and “Funghi” has led to a lot of cummunity and also fan club. There are also lots of products from “Funghi” such as handkerchiefs, slippers, toys, stickers, and a lot more, which is also an important source of income.

Osawari Tantei Nameko Saibai Kit   Google Search

Since BEEWORKS GAMES is growing from a small business to large business with different business model than others Web 2.0, it is interesting to see their best practices.

Best practices from BEEWORKS GAMES:

Scale with demand – Since BEEWORKS GAMES start small in mobile devices with “SamuraiEnbu”. Then they continue to release more title which “Funghi” are the most notable elements. They have release more and more game with “Funghi” which their customers like. They also produces products around “Funghi” which make their business growing big.

Syndicate business models – Since most of the games are related to “Touch Detective” they reuse a lots of graphic from others games which characters from “Mushroom Garden” series are very similar and the game system are almost the same with some variation giving them 3 ad-based apps instead of 1. The character from “Touch Detective” also reused to 3DS puzzle game called “Osawari Tantei Nameko Daihanshoku” which contain exactly the same poses from same characters. They also port 2 NDS games from “Touch Detective” series to iOS and Android with more contents.

Scale your pricing and revenue models – The game that are casual and endless from BEEWORKS GAMES are free to play with advertisement base revenue. They also have in app purchase to buy more chapter for games that are story driven and not endless. They also sell products from their games which attract people who are already their customers and people who don’t know about their games. This also indirectly advertise their games to people who saw their products.

Market virally – People download lots of free games from BEEWORKS GAMES with over 1 million download in Android for each games. They are growing fast and their community including their fan club also grow to be very large. They products market is also growing. You can see lots of products when you search in Google and it is still increasing.

Design for scale – “Mushroom Garden” series are very notable in their scale ability. BEEWORKS GAMES keep on updating the games and add more contents so that their users continue to play the games and they can also produce more products.


14 comments on “Lightweight Models & Cost-Effective Scalability

  1. lockinelu
    May 13, 2013

    hi there,
    haha nice post about the funghi game!!! i used to play this game and have finished it already, so fun 😛

    this is actually a good example of this pattern and it can be seen that the game is actually growing… as i can still remember at very beginning this game doesnt support android… and until now, it has a lot of version of the game on both IOS and android!

    as mentioned, beeworks keeps updating their games as in contents to make users continue play their products, except for continually updating the games and advertising revenue, just wondering, are there any other ways of gaining profits of beeworks??


    any comments made to my blog are appreciated 🙂

    • PrapatW
      May 15, 2013

      Hi Tse-Yen
      This is another way that BEEWORKs GAMES get money. It is all in Japanese though since they aim to sell their games related products which are mainly from Funghi to Japansese. They are lots of info about store which I can’t really read without Google translation. I think this is what has been scale the most from BEEWORKS GAMES since they have lots of fans. They sell their products to their fans and get even more fans.

      Prapat W.

  2. ngjerfen
    May 15, 2013

    Hi Prapat,

    Such a cute web application! The best part is it acts as a platform for other game developers to generate their new games for Beeworkz to advertise. It is amazing that all the games are free? It’s great that beeworkz continue to have version updates on the games so there are a wide variety for different gamers to pick. It’s great that they put in a youtube videos on most of the products for the users to gather abit of information about the game before downloading it.

    • PrapatW
      May 15, 2013

      Hi Jerfen

      BEEWORKS GAMES scale differently from others app like Facebook. Since they are doing business around Games they manage to grow their game bit by bit but the most important is their brand loyalties or their fans. This way they get to have high demands for their Funghi products which most of them are cute and very attractive.

      Prapat W.

  3. atang28
    May 15, 2013

    Hi Prapat,

    This seems like an interesting type of game, BEEWORK games has done well particularly with the first best practice, they first start out small then as revenue comes in the add more new features/titles and characters.


    • PrapatW
      May 25, 2013

      H Andy

      I think it will be interesting to see how BEEWORK GAMES grow. I’m not sure how big can it be since every game will have to end somewhere unlike apps that people can continue to use daily.

      Prapat W.

  4. sukhshans
    May 19, 2013

    Hi Prapat,

    The way BEEWORK produces games that are scaled up with multiple point of revenue is a good example on how to start from small and effectively scaling up. Many businesses tend to start by investing everything into just one application but in my opinion, starting small and learning while upgrading or developing is the way to go in the future.


    • PrapatW
      May 25, 2013

      Hi Sukshan

      BEEWORK GAMES is popular in Japan and have lots of shops that sell their “Funghi” products. Perhaps one day it will invade countries outside Japan too.

      Prapat W.

  5. azizalkaldi
    May 20, 2013

    Hi Prapat!

    BEEWORKS is certainly scaling up gradually and is increasing its market share in various mobile platforms including Android and iOS. Their syndicate model of leveraging the popularity of Funghi to sell merchandise such as toys and stickers is very smart. 🙂

    • PrapatW
      May 25, 2013

      Hi Aziz

      It is true as you said. I’ve taken interest in their business model and how their business grow so I’ve written this blog post about BEEWORK GAMES.

      Prapat W.

  6. Leo
    May 22, 2013

    Hi Prapat,

    I have actually tried games from BEEWORKS as well and I have to agree that they are really addictive! However, do you think that while the company has a great scalability in its revenue models, it lacks flexibility? Most of the games are “endless” free games that receives revenue from in-game purchases. Do you think it can improve its flexibility and cater for a larger user base if it changes its business model, e.g. provide free trials of games and let users decide if they want to pay for the full game?


    • PrapatW
      May 25, 2013

      Hi Leo

      Actually BEEWORK GAMES has lots of business model and strategies apply to each of their games. Touch detective series you can play for free for chapter 1 and halfway through chapter 2. It is now your choice to continue the game by buying more chapters.

      Prapat W.

  7. Guy Richards
    May 23, 2013

    Hi, Great post!

    Do you know how many servers they have and how communication intensive the games are to said servers? Also do you know how scalable these systems would be for long-term customer growth?

    • PrapatW
      May 25, 2013

      Hi Richards

      Unfortunately I don’t know how much servers they might have. Most of the games from BEEWORK GAMES didn’t really have communication much with the server though. They connect with their customer through others social medias instead such as Facebook, Twitter and also their community. I think they just want to have more customers so that they can get more revenue from ads and also “Funghi” products sale.

      Prapat W.

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