Video Game App Icon Design

What are the steps to take in creating a great app icon design for a video game?

Creating a great app icon design for a video game is one of the most essential parts required for App Store Optimization.

While there are hundreds of thousands of apps on both the Google Play and iTunes Store, end-users have little or no time to make a swift decision of whether or not to download your app. Practically, when majority of end-users browse through the app stores, the primary visual sight and impression of your app would be your app icon.

With this in mind, it becomes very vital for your app marketing and promotion – together with the reality that you will be utilizing such app icon in several locations such as within your app website, within app press releases, blogs, among others.

To own a great app icon for a video game which stands out doesn’t mean that you will start getting loads of downloads or that your app is the best in the marketplace, however it offers the benefit to attract users, thus making them explore your app in more depth.

To summarize, to create a great App Icon Design for Video Games, you have to consider the following vital key points:

  • Avoid utilizing words; as with a constructive/creative app name, you are okay and good to go.
  • Simply keep it simple by detailing your app to just one basic thing that it will be known for.
  • Make the design with precise details. Consider creating a 1024×1024 app icon, and ensure it looks great on full-screen.
  • Your app icon should be designed to stay consistent with your app. This will prevent confusion among users and help them to remember you much more efficiently. If you have numerous apps utilizing the same concept, then design the icons to flow with consistency
  • Design your app icon to stand out from the crowd and be innovative
  • You can include borders around your icon as this will help to make it appear great on all backgrounds. This is an essential tip as you never can tell where it will be utilized.

An attractive, identifiable and striking app icon will definitely leave a huge impact with regards to the popularity and success of your app and video game. The following points will discuss each of the vital aspects of app icon designs, offering further tips on how to enhance every phase. Below are pointers that our team at WAYPOINT follow for designing great App Icons:


One of the very vital areas of an app icon is its scalability. Understanding that the app icon would be displayed in numerous places all through the platform, and at diverse sizes, it becomes imperative that your production maintains its legibility and distinctiveness. Your app icon should be designed to appear well within the App Store, and even on Retina devices, among others.

Avoid over cramming your app icons on a canvas – as this will make them fall victim to bad scalability.

  • Designing the icon on a 1024 x 1024px canvas can be misleading, so ensure you figure out your designs on the device and within manifold contexts and sizes
  • Consider simplicity and concentrate on a single object, if possible a distinctive shape or element that maintains its outlines and qualities when scaled
  • Ensure the app icon looks great against a wide range of backgrounds


Your app icon is basically just like a little record and having the capacity to easily identify it amongst several others within the store or at your portal is a key factor in great app icon design for video games. Just as good music requires resonating with its listener, so do the ideas, colors, and shapes of an app icon. Experts would have to design the icons to craft a sense of retention and connection on both a practical and an expressive level.

With several thousands of other icons, yours will be seeking or fighting for attention – all icons have a similar 1024px canvas to create influence and secure engagement with viewers.  To get this right, consider the following:

  • Note that a wishy-washy, excessively complex app icon is the opposite of recognizable. So consider eliminating details from your app icon until the concept begins to wane out. This is likely to increase the chances of the app becoming more recognizable.
  • Consider diverse variants on your app design. You can line them up in a grid and scan over them, observing what areas of the design captures your eye.
  • And then look at analyzing your preferred app icons and figure out the reasons why you like them and what techniques they use to stand out.


An app icon interface that is consistent is vital as it helps in strengthening visual narratives. A good icon design is precisely an addition of what a great app should be all about. When you are able to produce a smooth, unified image of your app within your audiences’ minds, this will boost product satisfaction, and retention.

  • To achieve this, the way to guarantee consistency between your app and icon would be to keep the interface color palette and icon in-line, and utilize a comparable and consistent design semantic – for instance a blue interface reinforced by a blue app icon
  • While this may not be usually possible, a way to boost the connection between your app and icon would be for the icon symbolism to directly relay with the app’s functionality


Know that an app icon is continuously contending with other icons for users’ attention, and standing out of the crowd can be an impeccably binding argument for a design. Speaking of uniqueness – this is a delicate part of design, since it not only depends on one’s skills but also on the selections of others who would be tackling  the same task. Check out some different types of app icons here.

  • You have to put into consideration what everyone else might be doing in your space, and then look into another direction. You have to constantly carry out your research, as people do not just want some other checkmark icon
  • Creating a one-color background for instance – can be a tricky path to follow if you want to stay unique. So go ahead and play around with diverse colors and compositions, and task yourself to create innovative and intelligent descriptions
  • Consider color deeply, as it is a great and often disregarded method of repositioning a concept

Avoid using words

Words and images are distinct representative tools, and mingling them in what is thought to be a graphical exemplification would most often lead to a cluttered and unclear experience, and this is tougher to decode. Using vague words in app icons can hinder you from clearly conveying your intentions.

  • So in essence, there’s no need to add the app’s name on the icon as it will most likely be accompanying the icon within the interface. You should rather spend your time developing a cool pictographic concept
  • Avoid using both your business logo and name within a square as this is never a good way to go. If you do not have a mark or a glyph that functions perfectly within the constraints, then you are better off coming up with something novel. Take note – that icons and logos aren’t the same, and thus should not be forced within similar context.

Check out these icons from our A/B testing roughs for Game of War:

App Icon, App Store Optimization, WAYPOINT Creative App Icon, App Store Optimization, WAYPOINT

All said and well observed, these are simple and very vital steps to creating a great app icon for video games!

The WAYPOINT design team is known for creating some of the best video game app icons. With many years of experience in the field, you are sure to get the quality of work that will make your games distinct from the crowd.

All copyrights belong to their respective owners. Images used in this article are for educational purposes only.

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