Playing “Synthetic Watermelon” was “cut the leek”, the Internet celebrity game hides the scam

In 2021, the first phenomenon-level game was born, but it was called a “scam” after a few days without fire.

“Synthetic Watermelon” is on the hot search again, but this time it is no longer because it made countless people “top”, but because of the 19.9 yuan scam.

A large number of netizens reported on Weibo and other social media that they had received the so-called “100 mobile phone bill coupons” when playing games, but after paying 9.9 yuan or 19.9 yuan according to the instructions on the website, they found that the call charges could not be honored or refunded. paragraph.

According to a report by, over 1.66 million people have already received such coupons. If calculated by paying 19.9 yuan per person, the total amount involved has exceeded 30 million yuan.

“Charge phone bill” routine

“Synthetic Big Watermelon” is a simple web game. Since late January, this game has suddenly become popular on the Internet and has been on hot searches several times. According to data from the producer “Micro Umbrella Game”, as of noon on February 7, the number of players in “Synthetic Watermelon” has reached nearly 90 million.

But many netizens found that there is a “routine” behind this little game: click the “gift” icon in the upper right corner of the game interface, and you will be redirected to the lottery page. After the game, there will also be “red envelope delivery” and “scratch prize”. So-called “lottery winning” activities such as “lottery turntable” and so on. The prizes are sometimes 10,000 yuan of insurance, sometimes Unicom data packages, sometimes mobile phone “famous numbers”, and of course, they also include 100 yuan mobile phone bill coupons for more than 1.66 million people.

(Call coupon page, picture source / “China News Network” Weibo)

Tuanzi (Weibo ID: Tangcai Tuanzi) won a 100 yuan coupon when he played the web version of “Synthetic Watermelon” for the first time, but he had to pay 9.9 yuan. Tuanzi noticed the “no delivery, full refund” prompt, and did not think much about it, so he made the payment. After paying, it was an app called “Fun Hao Province”. She needed to download it, and she downloaded the app according to the prompts. However, when everything was done, the 100 yuan phone bill did not arrive as promised.

Tuanzi was not reconciled, thinking about looking for customer service, but found that there was no customer service channel at all. Later, she followed the WeChat public account to follow “Fun Hao Province” and found a call, but no one answered the call. Just when she wanted to give up, she suddenly thought that WeChat Pay could make a complaint, so she complained about the payment in the name of “inexplicable automatic deduction”. After explaining the situation and providing a screenshot of the payment order, Tuanzi’s The 9.9 yuan finally returned to her own hands.

(Tuanzi successfully got a refund after complaining on WeChat Pay. Image source/provided by interviewee)

However, perhaps it was due to media exposure. When the author experienced “Synthetic Watermelon” again on the afternoon of February 7, the “gift icon” in the upper right corner of the game interface was gone, and the familiar lottery page was gone after the game. Instead, “serious” advertising. The word “advertisement” is right above the screen, as if for fear that others will not see it.

The version on the afternoon of February 7 (left picture) no longer has the “gift” icon in the upper right corner (right picture)

The picture on the left shows the “Red Envelope Delivery” page after the previous game of “Synthetic Watermelon”, which has become a normal advertising page on the afternoon of February 7 (right picture)

In fact, this kind of call coupon routine does not only appear in the small game “Synthetic Watermelon”. Anti (Weibo ID: Anti-Li) came across such a lottery during Weibo a few days ago. The routine is the same as the one in “Big Watermelon”. The same is 19.9 yuan for a 100 yuan phone bill. . After the payment is completed, the web page leads to an APP called “Global Duke Black Card”.

After clicking on the link to the lottery webpage provided by Aetina, the author was drawn to receive the 10,000 yuan insurance jointly issued by Wukong Insurance and Taikang Life Insurance that I had previously drawn while playing “Big Watermelon”. You need to fill in your mobile phone number to receive it. , The page displayed at that time, “789096 users have already received it.”

(The free insurance page that pops up after the lottery is exactly the same as the one I won in the “Big Watermelon” game a few days ago. Screenshot/Li Ying)

Some netizens joked about the “big watermelon” scam, “You thought you were melon farmers, but later found out that you were all big watermelons waiting to be harvested.” It is a fact that a large number of players have been deceived. The small scam of only one phone bill has trapped 1.66 million people. This small game that caused a national carnival is truly extraordinary.

What kind of “magic” does “Synthetic Watermelon” have?

What is the charm of “big watermelon”?

Momei, who has always regarded “Happy Diminishing Music” as the number one in the game, ranked No. 2 after playing several rounds of “Synthetic Watermelon”. This made Li Xin in the sister group feel incredible, so she clicked on the game link to find out. Unexpectedly, after playing a few rounds, Li Xin himself became “ghostly infatuated”.

In the past few weeks, “Synthetic Watermelon” has been on hot searches several times. Under the influence of major events in the entertainment industry, epidemic topics, and social hotspots, it is rare for such a small game that is so simple and boring in the eyes of many people to have such a high popularity. What is so special about this “Synthetic Watermelon” that will become the first hot game to sweep the Internet in 2021?

“Obviously I think it’s a boring game, but I can’t stop it. I guess it’s really poisonous!”

Fruits such as grapes, cherries, oranges, lemons, etc. are randomly dropped over the game interface. Players can control where the fruits fall by clicking with their fingers. Two purple grapes can be combined into a small cherry, two small cherries can be combined into an orange, and two oranges can be combined into one. Lemon…In this way, small fruits can be continuously combined into larger fruits, until a large watermelon is formed. When fruits accumulate to the red dotted line above, all fruits will burst and the game ends.

Just such a small game that you can play with your fingers, Lizi (Weibo ID: Senyu and Lizi) has been playing ecstatically for a whole week. Since Monday, the online time is no less than 6 hours a day. “In the morning, I just put it away at work and play until lunch. I have time to sleep at noon, but when my eyes are closed, it’s a big watermelon.”

Knowing that such crazy game play has seriously affected his work, but Li Zi just couldn’t control himself. “I don’t understand the point where this game made me fall, that is, it is inexplicable.”

Memei is different from Lizi. She can sum up one, two or three as to why she likes to play “Synthetic Watermelon”. Compared with “Happy Xiaoxiaole”, Momei feels that “Big Watermelon” is much simpler, and there is no “energy” (Happy Xiaoxiaole needs 5 “energy points” for each game, and there is no way without energy Play games) restrictions, very easy to learn.

Because it is simple enough, you can keep playing without fear of difficulty. “Up to ninety-nine, down to just knowing how to go, you can play as long as you have a finger.” Bobo (Weibo ID: Dabo Kitten)’s daughter is 5 years old this year. In the second game, she formed a ” big watermelon”.

Memei also enjoys the crackling feeling of two being combined into one, especially when it is very refreshing. This “cool” feeling is very decompressive in Bobo’s view. Playing a few games before going to bed on a working day can relieve the fatigue caused by work.

In addition, for people like Li Xin with relatively small mobile phone memory, the linked gameplay of “Synthetic Watermelon” is undoubtedly just right. “It feels like a’sticky note’, because it doesn’t require you to download the app, so it doesn’t have to be so formal. You can throw it away if you have enough.” Li Xin said that such a small game has a very friendly experience.

As for why it makes people “top”, “Synthetic Watermelon” naturally has its small “scheming”: unlimited. “Lei Technology” pointed out that by not setting the upper limit of the game to eliminate the purpose of the game, the player will gradually wear down the thinking ability in the continuous play, and the never-ending game goal will drive the player one game after another. To play.

“Participant” Momei said that she regretted it, very regretful. “Every time I finish a game, I regret it very much. I think I can do better, so I learnt the experience and started the next round.”

Everything can be “Synthetic Big Watermelon”

Judging from the spreading trend and feedback from players, “Synthetic Watermelon” is similar to the previous popular games, but the spread of “Big Watermelon” has given birth to some new phenomena.

It is understood that the source code of “Synthetic Watermelon” has been open sourced on GitHub, and various new versions can be derived with simple modifications. When you are still thinking about how to synthesize a “big watermelon”, programmers who follow the hotspot and are very “playful” have begun to develop and grow the “synthesis” family.

The open source code of “Synthetic Watermelon”, the picture is from the “Silent King Two” of the UP main of station B

By modifying the pattern in the source code, you can put anything you want to synthesize in it. As a result, various magical revisions of “Big Watermelon” are coming: fans are busy synthesizing their own stars; schoolmasters are happy to synthesize their own universities; boys start synthesizing Ultraman… For a while, synthesize emoji, synthesize small sesame, synthesize Derivative game versions such as World One University and Synthetic Idol have also become new targets pursued by many players.

“Synthetic Ultraman” game interface

In addition to modifying the pattern, many people have changed the gameplay by modifying the source code, making the “big watermelon” no longer so unattainable. In the cheating mode where “tomatoes” or half of “watermelons” are dropped, synthesizing “big watermelons” is no longer a dream.

In short, the various versions of “Synthetic Watermelon” are only you can’t think of, no programmers can’t do it. With the blessing of the derivative version, “Synthetic Watermelon” has become a brand new gameplay, forming a “synthetic” school by itself.

The open source of the game has impacted the inherent copyright of “Big Watermelon” on the one hand, but on the other hand it has given UGC (User Produced Content) room to play. Under the unconscious secondary production and dissemination of the players, the volume of the game is getting louder and louder. The “Synthetic Watermelon” that has been “broken” is actually eroding the player’s world in another way.

Who is “picking watermelons” behind?

“Synthetic Watermelon” is a free game, but this does not affect its commercial value. When each player rushed to “Synthetic Big Watermelon”, the traffic with wealth was just like a snowball.

As long as the players who have played a complete round of “Big Watermelon” will find that when the game is over and click “View Score”, a page of “Red Envelope Delivery” will appear. If you continue to “click to claim”, the “Unicom” will appear. Advertising content such as “big network card”, phone bills, insurance, etc. These advertisements were “composited” by the players again and again, resulting in repeated exposures. Even without considering the “scam” factors in it, the share of these traffic is enough to make game operators make a fortune.

The “Red Envelope Delivery” page after the game is over

The ad page that follows

Tracing back to “Synthetic Big Watermelon”, we can find a commercial promotion platform called “Umbrella Game”. The main business of this platform is to create commercial activities in social games for brand promotion, online guidance, product promotion, Marketing etc.

“Lightweight, creative gameplay, and pure advertising monetization” are the typical characteristics of this type of ultra-casual game. “Synthetic Watermelon” is one, and the same is true for the popular “Jump Jump” and “Bounce Play” in the previous two years.

(In recent years, the mobile terminal phenomenon-level game overview tabulation / Li Ying)

In the fast-paced era of fragmentation, ultra-casual games have a huge market capacity, but there are not many small games like “Synthetic Watermelon” and “Jump Jump” that have national popularity. Liu Yi, Head of Developer Relations at Voodoo China, mentioned in his speech that according to their large number of test results, the probability of success for ultra-casual games from being creative to becoming a global hit may only be 2%.

Micro Umbrella Games is constantly updating this commercial promotion carrier with a frequency of one ultra-casual mini game a week. The “Synthetic Big Watermelon” that made us so top is just one of the many H5 mini games of Umbrella Games, and it is thrown in the game pile. It is not conspicuous. According to the data provided by DataEye, the material delivery volume of “Synthetic Watermelon” is actually 0, which means that this little game has never placed any ads to promote itself. It’s just that, driven by the “eating melon” atmosphere in the national entertainment circle, it successfully turned itself into the sweetest “melon” in the “melon field”.

The ultra-casual games are stubble after stubble like leeks. Players who used to play “Jump” without sleeping in the middle of the night are now drifting away on the road of “Synthetic Big Watermelon”. But behind the “big watermelon” there will be the next “jump”, with endless traffic and more games. However, after playing a round, be careful of the routine behind the lottery page.

(Chestnut and Bobo are pseudonyms)

Source: Finance


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