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I'm in the process of making an iOS app. It is a puzzle game, very similar to the game 2048.

The software I am using is outdated/not well implemented making it difficult to impossible to include sound effects. I am considering just rolling out the game with no sounds. I figure they are not essential to the game and most people turn off the sounds anyway.

Is it worth delaying/stopping release of my game while I bash my head in figuring out the sound, or is it a non-essential feature. Will it be detrimental to a users experience to be silent even in they try to turn up the sound?

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I believe most users will expect sound, and if there isn't they might feel something is wrong with the app (either with their version of the app or the app itself). Even if most users don't want the sound, I think that is an opt-out decision. So you might probably get complains from users telling their app is not working correctly, because if there is no sound they might think something else might not work correctly.

You can go on without sound, but I would inform the user it is intended and tell them why. You could make this an advantage, but you would have to sell it well (give an acceptable reason). A spy game where silence is part of the experience? Just an example, but if you decide not to include sound: tell the user and tell the user why. Even if the sound is not 100% part of the game experience it might feel weird.

Also consider that when releasing an app the first days are the most valuable. It might be worth waiting to create a better impression. But the timing is also important, so also consider this. For example if you were going to release a Christmas app, it might be better to release it without sound the day before Christmas than a week after with sound.

  • I agree with the solution you gave. – Jasmin Javia Jan 11 '17 at 6:15
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I have played 2048 in an environment where silence was needed (classroom); if your game is something similar to 2048 then no sound is an acceptable option.

Sound is a contribution to the UX

“The sounds a product makes are there to contribute to its usability, enjoyment, and brand identity—in some cases in more compelling ways than its form or functionality.” source

I see it as an enhancement of a product with already a solid UX and not as the key factor of success.

For your case, I do not believe that delaying or stopping the release will provide a better overall experience as designing sound requires skills, an adequate framework, time and feedbacks from your users. Besides, if you were to design the sound, it has to be nicely done or it will be more of a nuisance than anything else.

Further reading Audio and the user experience - uxmatters

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