Analysis of Casual Game Ad Creatives from Top-Grossing Games

Analysis of Casual Game Ad Creatives from Top-Grossing Games

by Andrea Knezovic

Are you looking for examples of casual game ad creatives?

You’ve come to the right place. 

In this article, I’m analyzing top-performing casual game ad creatives from top-grossing games in the genre – Coin Master, Project Makeover, and Family Island. 

I will break down the creative concept, target audience, player motivations, CTAs, and ad copy for each creative. 

This will help you understand what makes a good video ad for casual games. Use these examples to boost your creative production and stand out from the competition.

Coin Master 

To start, I’m going to break down this casual game ad creative from Coin Master. But first, here’s some basic information about this top-grossing game. 

Game Info

Released back in 2010, Coin Master by Moon Active is one of the most popular casual games on the market. Currently, Coin Master is the second top-grossing casual game on Google Play and the third top-grossing casual game on the Apple App Store. (SensorTower)

If we consider its core game mechanics, Coin Master is a social casino game. Along with slot mechanics, Coin Master has additional game elements. Primarily, the ability to attack and raid other players’ villages and collect cards. 

Downloads (iOS data, GameRefinery): more than 40 million 

Revenue (iOS, GameRefinery): more than $513 million 

Coin Master Ad Example

coin master ad concept influeners

Creative Concept

This Coin Master ad is the continuation of Moon Active’s viral influencer campaign running since 2020. It features celebrities like the Kardashians, J.Lo, Cardi B, and in this case, Joan Collins. 

The concept behind this and other influencer ads for Coin Master is simple. The goal is to make people think celebrities play this game. 


It’s a simple case of social proof. 

The author Robert Cialdini coined this term back in the 80s. He found that people copy the actions of others and emulate the behavior of others if they’re unsure how to act. That can be applied to marketing – people look for reviews or recommendations from others. 

Influencers, of course, have the immense power to influence those decisions. 

Furthermore, this ad shows the viewers how to download the game and explains the basics. For that reason, it also works as a tutorial. 

Target Audience

Let’s talk about who this ad is for. In other words, who is the target audience for this Coin Master influencer creative?

The answer lies in the celebrity influencer. 

Joan Collins is the most famous for playing Alexis in Dynasty, a popular 80s soap opera. 

This is the first clue that this ad is not intended for younger audiences like Gen Z, who were not even born when Dynasty was running. I bet even some Millennials might not know who Joan Collins is. 

On the other hand, Gen X and Baby Boomers are certainly more familiar with both Dynasty and Joan Collins. The former grew up watching the show, and the latter were adults also familiar with the show.

This tells us people between the ages of 41 and 56 (Gen X) and older than 56 (Baby Boomers) are the primary target audience for this ad. 

Additionally, Joan Collins has a big gay following. This is another group of people this ad might appeal to. 

Also, the fact that this ad demonstrates how to download the game and how it works tells us it’s intended for an older audience, not familiar with Coin Master or mobile games in general.

coin master ad intro joan collins


The first few seconds of a video creative are critical. 

If you do it right, people will stop and watch your ad. In other words, you’ll get their undivided attention. 

On the other hand, if nothing exciting or interesting is happening at the beginning of your ad, people will keep scrolling. 

Let’s see how the intro of this Coin Master creative fares. 

In the first few seconds, we see Joan Collins and her butler. Because she’s a celebrity, just the fact that a legend like Joan Collins is in a mobile game ad is more than enough to get the viewers’ attention. 

That’s the advantage of using influencers/celebrities in mobile game ads. They garner attention just by appearing in an ad. 

coin master features in ad

Game Features and Benefits 

This Coin Master video ad includes the most basic features of this game. 

More specifically, Joan Collins wonders what it means to get three hammers on the slot machine. Her butler replies that it means she can attack someone’s village. 

Furthermore, the ad demonstrates how simple the game is – anyone can pick it up in seconds. 

Player Motivations/ Player Archetypes 

Most mobile game creatives are motivation-based. In other words, they target groups of players based on their motivations for playing mobile games. For example, some play games to relax, while others are driven by competing with other players. 

From these motivations, we can also identify common player archetypes. 

When it comes to this Coin Master ad, we see a strong social aspect – players can play against other players. Thus, it appeals to players who consider gaming a social activity. In other words, they’re motivated by social connection. 

Furthermore, because this ad highlights the ability to raid other players’ villages, it appeals to players who are into winning and beating others. 

The player archetype that corresponds to this motivation is King of the Hill. GameRefinery describes this player archetype as enjoying the sense of power from competing with friends or other people. 


This ad creative also includes text, “Your friends are already there…you must check it out.” Interestingly, the message is placed on the top and the bottom, and is displayed throughout the video. The game’s mascot is also present in the bottom right corner. 

Once again, the social aspect of this game is highlighted. 

Additionally, there are captions so that people watching on mute know what’s going on in the ad. 

Atmosphere & Tone 

When I think about the overall atmosphere and the tone of this Coin Master ad, the words that come to mind are humorous, light, and fun. 

That’s the case with most Coin Master ads. 

By keeping the atmosphere lighthearted and playful, the ad viewers get a sense that Coin Master is not a dark or serious game but rather a lighthearted and entertaining one. 

Music & Sound Effects

The setting of this ad creative is quite formal. Joan Collins is sitting at a dining table while her butler stands next to her. The background music follows this theme – it complements the fine dining setting. 

coin master ad call to action

Call to Action

The CTA is the least successful element of this Coin Master ad. It’s just a generic “Download now”. 

Granted, it has more weight because Joan Collins is telling people to download this game. But still, it’s quite expected and boring. 

A more personalized call to action would work much better. 

Ad Copy

Finally, let’s analyze this creative’s ad copy, “Everyone Is Playing This Game. Don’t Stay Behind.”

It utilizes the psychology behind FOMO, and it’s light years away from generic CTA’s like “Play now”. 

Fear of missing out is the feeling of anxiety that comes from thinking others are having a great time without you. It makes you feel like you’re missing out on something and like others are having more fun than you. 

That’s a powerful motivator to join. 

It makes people think everyone is playing this game, and they’re the only ones missing out on all the fun.


Creative Concept:

Ad Copy:

Call to Action:

Project Makeover

The next casual game ad creative I’m going to analyze comes from Project Makeover. But before we get into it, here’s what this game is all about and how it has performed so far. 

Game Info 

Published by Magic Tavern in 2020, Project Makeover quickly became one of the top-grossing games in the casual genre. 

It’s a match-3 puzzle game with makeover, customization, renovation, decoration, and narrative meta-layers. 

As you can see, this game has a lot to offer besides the simple match-3 mechanics, which is why it became so popular so quickly. 

The game’s goal is to give makeovers to clients and choose their hairstyle, makeup, clothes, and even furniture. The game also has characters with extreme personalities, so there’s no shortage of drama. All that while solving puzzles. 

Downloads (iOS data, GameRefinery): more than 40 million 

Revenue (iOS, GameRefinery): more than $110 million

Project Makeover Ad Example 

project makeover ad creative concept

Creative Concept

Here’s the main concept behind this ad – help a girl with her makeover, so she can get the guy she likes. 

This is the starting point of many Project Makeover ads; this is just one variation of it. 

What makes Project Makeover creatives stand out is their shock value. The makeover starts with the girl not covered but drenched in mud from head to toe. 

Including shocking and unusual scenes has been a recent mobile game ad trend led by this game. The goal, of course, is to grab the audience’s attention. 

Furthermore, this ad utilizes another creative trend – fail ads, as the makeover ends up being a huge disaster. 

The psychology behind fail ads is to make people think they would be more successful with the makeover and thus motivate them to download the game to prove it. 

Target Audience

Judging by the game and its advertising style, we can conclude that Project Makeover is geared toward women and has a majority female audience. 

Furthermore, if we look at the ad concept (makeover, male crush), it tells us the target audience for this ad is younger, in the 25-34 age bracket. Most older women would probably find this type of content a bit juvenile. 

What makes this Project Makeover ad so good at reaching its target audience is the fact that many young women can relate to the story. It connects to their personal experiences. 

Even though the scenes in the ad are exaggerated, many young women have insecurities about the way they look and would love a makeover. 

Furthermore, changing your physical appearance to make a guy like you is also something many women have experienced, no matter how dated this may sound in 2021. 

project makeover ad intro


As I’ve mentioned before, the purpose of the ad intro is to immediately grab people’s attention. 

This Project Makeover ad excels at this. 

What we see in the first few seconds is a woman, soaked in mud, walking up to a cute guy. 

Would this scene make you scroll past the ad, or would you stop and keep watching to find out what is going on here?

That’s what I thought. 

It’s so outrageous that it’s impossible to look away. 

project makeover features in ads

Game Features and Benefits

This ad creative zones in on the makeover feature. More specifically, on customizing hair, makeup, and clothes. 

However, keep in mind that what you see in this ad is not a part of Project Makeover’s gameplay. Yes, the game’s task is to give makeovers to clients. But they’re not covered in mud – players get regular clients, not complete disasters. 

There’s also no mention of match-3 puzzles, even though that’s core gameplay and what players will spend the most time on. 

Player Motivations/Player Archetypes

Judging by the meta-layers displayed in this ad creative (customization, makeover), it seems that it targets players who are motivated by self-expression. GameRefinery calls this group of players Expressionists. 

For them, it’s important to express their identity through gameplay. Moreover, they’re into customizing, designing, decorating, and storytelling. 

According to GameRefinery, Expressionists are 65% female. 42% of them fall in the 16 to 24 age bracket, and 43% are aged between 25 and 44. 

project makeover captions in ads


The captions only appear at the beginning of the ad. The girl thinks to herself, “He’s too hot for me.” 

That explains the ad’s premise – this girl needs a makeover because her crush is too good-looking compared to her. 

Furthermore, there’s a button that says “Help her”. It has the purpose of pulling viewers in, as displayed in the first few seconds of the ad. 

Atmosphere & Tone

The overall tone of this Project Makeover ad is humorous. The outrageous makeover scenes are there for a reason – they’re supposed to be funny. 

Music & Sound Effects

The music reflects the light and humorous atmosphere of this ad creative. It’s the ever-present whistling ukulele background music that can be found in many YouTube videos and ads. 

The sound effects make the ad seem more interactive – they emphasize the buttons as the pointer hand hovers over them. Furthermore, the sound effects accentuate the makeover (sound of the shower, shaving, hair iron, etc.) 

Additionally, the sound effects let the viewers know which step of the makeover was successful and which was a fail. That’s also represented visually with either a green checkmark or a red X symbol.  

project makeover ad call to action

Call to Action

The CTA in this ad creative is quite subtle and simple. The viewers only see a pink “Play” button at the end of the ad. 

A more unique and personalized CTA might perform better in this case. 

Ad Copy

This is the ad copy for this creative, “How will HER story end? Change how HER story ends!”

It targets gamers who are into narrative elements in games because they’re invited to influence the girl’s story in the ad. 

Furthermore, it makes the ad viewers connect to the main character in this ad and her story. “HER” is emphasized, even though she’s not a part of the gameplay. 

The only thing that could make this ad copy even better is emojis.  

However, keep in mind that this is just one copy variation for this ad. There are several different ones, each targeting a different group of players. 


Creative Concept:

Ad Copy:

Call to Action:

Family Island

The final casual game ad creative I’m going to analyze is Family Island’s video ad. Let’s start with some basic information about this popular casual game. 

Game Info 

Family Island was released by Melsoft Games back in 2019. It’s a casual farming game full of adventures set in the Stone Age. 

The goal is to help a family rebuild their lives after their home was destroyed by a volcanic eruption. 

Players can explore various territories, solve puzzles, find hidden objects, build a city, farm, cook, customize, and decorate. 

As you can see, it has many simulation and strategy game elements (gathering resources, farming, city building, upgrading buildings, etc.) However, it’s not as complex as most strategy and simulation games, which makes it fall into the casual category. 

Downloads (iOS data, GameRefinery): more than 6 million 

Revenue (iOS, GameRefinery): more than $47 million 

Family Island Ad Example 

family island creative concept

Creative Concept

The concept behind this ad creative is story-based, which is a popular trend among casual and puzzle games. 

It’s about the Stone Age family, who are the main characters of this game. 

The pregnant mother, along with her daughter, catches her husband cheating on her with another woman. 

To make things worse, we find out it’s Valentine’s day. 

There are two options – leave and revenge. The former is chosen, so the mother and daughter go away on a deserted island and start building everything from scratch. 

The story is dramatic and reminiscent of soap operas, but it ties in well with the gameplay, which is why this ad concept is successful. 

Target Audience

Because the ad is story-based and the main character of this ad is a woman who discovers her husband is unfaithful, we can conclude it targets a female audience. 

Many female players are not only attracted to narrative ads but also to stories of women overcoming bad male behavior and moving forward. It’s something that many women can relate to. 

Furthermore, because the game characters are older and the storylines are more mature, this creative might appeal more to an older female audience, rather than Gen Z or Millennials. 

family island ad intro


This Family Island ad creative does a great job of pulling people in right from the start. The cheating sequence happens in the first few seconds of the ad and is strategically placed there to garner attention. 

Naturally, people want to know what happens next. 

Does she forgive him, get revenge or leave?

That’s what motivates them to continue watching. 

family island game features in ads

Game Features and Benefits

The first part of the ad is story-based and doesn’t include gameplay footage. However, in the second part, the viewers are presented with several game features and benefits. 

Most importantly, the ad demonstrates gathering resources, building, as well as the ability to explore new areas and discover hidden items. 

Player Motivations/Player Archetypes

Considering the content of this ad and the game features it showcases, we can conclude it targets a couple of different groups of players. 

First up, there are those motivated by self-expression. They like building, designing, and leaving their mark. 

Then there are people motivated by discovery, i.e., explorers. For them, discovering new areas and finding hidden treasures is very satisfying. 

Finally, there’s a group of people who are motivated by escapism. They like to escape their reality and immerse themselves in different worlds and intricate storylines. 

family island ad captions and text


There are no captions or text in this ad besides the aforementioned buttons with choices – leave and revenge

Atmosphere & Tone

Even though the storyline is quite dramatic and features a serious topic of cheating, the overall tone of this ad is light. How this story is told is, in fact, quite funny. 

You’ll notice that most casual game ad creatives are not overly serious, which works well for this genre. 

Music & Sound Effects

The background music is upbeat and jungle-themed, which works well for this game. 

The sound effects emphasize both the storyline and the gameplay aspect of this ad creative. Since the game is set in the Stone Age, the characters are not talking. Instead, grunts, moans, and cries help to tell the story. 

family island call to action

Call to Action

The CTA for this ad creative is quite interesting – it just says “Continue”. That’s an invitation for people to download the game and continue the gameplay they saw in the ad. 

While the idea behind it is good, the CTA should be clearer. For example, ”Continue building the island” or “Continue exploring.” 

Ad Copy

This is the ad copy for this Family Island ad, “What will you grow on your Stone Age farm? 🤩🌴”

It’s good that it speaks directly to the target audience and asks them a question, making it feel more personalized. 

Furthermore, it’s directly related to the game and describes what it’s about (a casual farming game set in the Stone Age). 


Creative Concept:

Ad Copy:

Call to Action:

Final Thoughts on Casual Game Ad Creatives

Hopefully, my analysis of these three casual game ad creatives helped you figure out what works for this genre. 

Feel free to use these video ads as your inspiration, but make sure to make it your own. 

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About Udonis

Udonis is an independent full-service mobile marketing agency that acquired more than 200,000,000 users for mobile games since 2018.

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