How FinanceBuzz Rates Gaming Apps

FinanceBuzz rates gaming apps using a star-based scoring system, where one star is the lowest score and five stars is the highest. These scores are based on our own proprietary calculations that generate an overall star rating based on specific features of each game, such as system compatibility, gameplay, quality, payout methods for cash prizes, and the overall user experience.

Overview of the gaming apps we rate

Most of the games we rate are part of major gaming app platforms, such as:

  • Papaya
  • Avia
  • Skillz

These platforms all offer various skill-based games, including ones where players can compete in tournaments to try and win cash prizes. Cash-prize tournaments aren’t available in every U.S. state, but we include gaming apps that also offer free ways to play and win in-game currency, like bonus cash, tickets, or gems.

While you can find similar games across all platforms (such as Solitaire), each iteration has unique gameplay mechanics, points systems, and tournament options that we analyze to generate the individual game's score.

Purchase/payout methods and entry fees

Cash tournaments in gaming apps usually require players to deposit money and pay an entry fee to participate. We prioritize games that make themselves accessible to more players through lower entry fees and lower minimum payout thresholds. We also review each game’s available purchase/payout options and associated fees, with higher scores given to games that charge lower withdrawal fees and offer more ways to deposit funds and cash out winnings. 

App quality and popularity

We consider compatibility with operating systems and devices for each gaming app to gauge how widely available a particular game is. We also consider multiple user-generated metrics, such as app store ratings and reviews, to help determine the overall quality and popularity of an app among a broad swath of users. Higher scores are given to games that are compatible with both iOS and at least one major Android app store. 

User experience

We rate each game based on our own overall experience with the app. Our editors consider a variety of factors to determine a user experience score, including ads, gameplay, design, entertainment, and how the game compares to similar games you'd find on other platforms.

How ratings influence our content

Ratings influence the products and companies we choose to feature in our content. We’re more likely to include those with high scores, but our editorial team also considers topic-specific features and drawbacks to prioritize the needs of our audience. Products and companies with below-average scores may still be featured if their offerings fit a particular topic and could be valuable to readers.

As detailed in our editorial policy and advertiser disclosure, we receive compensation from companies featured in our content. However, while compensation may influence the order in which products or companies appear on a page, it does not in any way affect our star rating calculations or editorial opinions and recommendations.

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