Big Baller Fantasy Challenge - DraftKings Releases Game for iPhone

With the incredible overlays that DraftKings has been putting towards its promotions lately, it should come as no surprise that they’ve put some focus on attracting new users from the ever-growing mobile industry. However, DraftKing’s new iPhone app, “Big Baller”, isn’t quite what you might expect.

rg misc big baller 4

Big Baller isn’t simply a mobile version of the daily fantasy game you know-and-love on DraftKings, in fact it’s quite a bit different. It’s described in the App Store as: “BIG Baller Fantasy Challenge is a new and simplified spin on Fantasy Sports. Compete in real-time, daily fantasy sports matches with your friends. Win in-game coins, level up, unlock power-ups, and dominate your friends.” What that means is Big Baller is a social-game where you compete against your friends for fantasy dominance by assembling a team of players with stars, not US dollars, and compete for bragging rights and to move up the leaderboard. Think Words with Friends meets a simplified version of Daily Fantasy….with a few characters along the way (see: Coach O’Keife image below).

While the concept caught me off guard at first, I’ll admit that Big Baller wound up being very fun to play. The tutorial was helpful and quite amusing, and building a lineup was simple and quick enough that I built a game on-the-go. The leaderboard is a great way to compete with your friends, and the real-time scoring is highly innovative for the mobile, social-gaming realm. A nice feature is that if none of your friends are available, you can also get a game started at anytime vs. the computer (aka “Pimply Pete”). While there are a few minor bugs to work out, Big Baller could become an innovative hit amongst mainstream fantasy sports fans.

Mobile has been a huge focus of the daily fantasy industry lately, with sites scrambling to get their games to be playable in the palm of their users. FanDuel recently upgraded their Mobile Site, and DraftStreet has just released an enitrely new mobile site and Android app . The direction taken by DraftKings is unique because it’s seeking to attract new users from the large social gaming market, not to expand its services to existing customers. Hopefully it works out. You can download Big Baller Fantasy Challenge for iPhone here.

About the Author

  • Cameron MacMillan (Cameron)

  • Cameron MacMillan co-founded RotoGrinders.com in 2010 along with Cal Spears and Riley Bryant. He operates on the business as the COO of RotoGrinders, and now the COO of Better Collective, TN, after Better Collective acquired RotoGrinders in 2019. – Follow him on twitter at @Cam_Mac_Millan

Comments

  • JRobs

    DraftKings CEO

    Thanks for the shout out, Cameron. Our hope with the app is to be able to introduce new players to the game in order to grow the industry overall. We hope that all sites and current Grinders benefit from it. The app is multi-platform and can be accessed on iPhone, Android, or through the Facebook Canvas.

    Our mobile site should be ready around the start of NFL season. More news to come on that!

  • toochunky

    RG Blogger

    I downloaded this to check it out, but you must login with Facebook to play, so I deleted it. For some people this may be convenient though.

    Was kind of turned off too by what look like obvious shill reviews on iTunes. You gotta do what you gotta do, I guess.

  • nexus

    • 2011 FanDuel WFBC Finalist

    Can’t wait for the mobile site for smart phones.

  • JMOB

    DraftKings Rep

    @toochunky – there are only 9 reviews on iPhone AppStore. Most of them are us, as you can tell. I feel its only fair that the few people who have spent the last 6 months of their lives building the application are allowed to rate it favorably. Afterall, even The President of the United States gets to vote [for himself]. :P

    The rest of the world will rate it the way they want to rate it. As it relates to the Facebook sign in, we are doing only limited permissions so we only get your name, your public profile picture and email. Its actually less data than you’d provide to us than if it was a direct sign in.

    Feel free to email me with any questions – jmendell@draftkings.com

  • hayman

    Interesting concept…my only thought here is this is like a zynga poker model…and the people who play zynga poker are not the guys depositing on real money poker sites.

  • toochunky

    RG Blogger

    @JMOB I have no issue with Draftkings folks giving themselves 5 stars on the App Store.

    That is different than Draftkings execs posing as “customers” and writing glowing reviews of their own product. Yes, the President can vote for himself, but this is more like barry2012 going on to Amazon and telling everyone what a great read he found all his own books to be.

    I’m not pretending this is the most unethical thing of all time. But it’s obviously not kosher. That’s straightforward. All I said was that it was a turn-off to me. Trust is pretty paramount in the Daily Fantasy biz, and I think most daily fantasy people would consider even this minor dishonesty to be a misstep.

  • JMOB

    DraftKings Rep

    @toochunky – Thanks for the comments :P… well maybe in the future you will check it out. if you email me, I’ll drop you a note when we have a direct sign in (vs Facebook only). And some coins to play with.

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