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Supernauts meets Ruzzle – Moving on Up


Past this week at Slush, we met with some of the up and coming players in the mobile industry.

Two of these companies are MAG Interactive, who just announced a $6 million first investment by Nokia Growth Partners (NGP), and Grand Cru, a Finnish gaming company, who had secured an investment by NGP earlier this year.

We sat down with Daniel Hasselberg, the CEO and co-founder of MAG Interactive and Markus Pasula, the CEO and co-founder of Grand Cru, to talk about mobile gaming and the water in Nordic countries.

MAG Interactive already have two successful games out in the market (Ruzzle and Quizcross), and Grand Cru is taking a look to free up their first recreation, Supernauts, later this year.

What was once the primary mobile sport you performed?

Markus: Nokia Snake again within the late ninety’s.

Daniel:  Comparable right here. It used to be just about the one recreation to be had at the moment.

How did you find yourself growing mobile video games for work?

Markus: I believe I began just a little bit too early. I joined this mobile recreation begin-up Insurrection Leisure in 2000. The corporate went bankrupt earlier than we launched our first recreation. We had been making video games in response to SMS messaging and WAP – it used to be the darkish a long time of mobile gaming. Issues acquired higher after that.

Daniel: My historical past is if truth be told in mobile services and products and apps, and to start with it wasn’t a lot about gaming. This was once again within the late ninety’s. It was once some 10 years later, when app outlets emerged, when it felt like the long run was once ultimately right here. That’s once we began to create some truly cool apps.

Many mobile recreation firms (like Rovio and Supercell), branching out from Finland and Sweden, have produced some beautiful a hit titles globally. Is there one thing within the water right here within the northern hemisphere that explains this?

Markus: I feel it’s the hobbyist perspective. Folks right here put their minds, arms and hearts to it and so they in point of fact care about what they do. There’s additionally a protracted historical past of mobile gaming in Sweden and Finland. Each international locations are pioneers on this space.

Daniel: I feel there are a variety of similarities between Finland and Sweden, so it’s now not a shock that each international locations are making an identical growth on this space. There’s the eighty’s demo scene in each nations and lots of the founders of lately’s recreation firms have an identical backgrounds, rising up within the 80s doing video games and programming with Commodore sixty four machines. I additionally suppose that Nokia and Ericsson have performed a key position, offering a superior engineering historical past and be aware of-how on the way to construct firms.


What makes a in reality just right mobile recreation?

Markus: One method for a in reality excellent mobile sport is to do one thing for mobile that isn’t but achieved smartly. There are nonetheless quite a few untapped gaming genres and a number of new audiences, who’re nonetheless ready for the best sport. Every other vital factor is to have in mind the place, how and for a way lengthy folks play.

Daniel: I believe execution is tremendous vital. In our case for instance the sport itself isn’t tremendous unique or one thing new, but it surely’s about how we execute it. It desires to seem good, be tremendous straightforward to play and naturally match into these moments when you wish to have to share the gaming expertise with your mates. Making a recreation idea that’s acquainted somewhat than model new is in truth a bonus because the consumer will get it in 10 seconds.

Let’s speak about monetization. How do you are making or are planning to generate profits along with your video games?

Markus: Our recreation, Supernauts, can be pushed by means of digital economies and in-app buying. Folks can use digital cash to hurry up the development, purchase different ornamental objects, and all types of little toys they are able to use to specific themselves.

Daniel: We have now two video games in the market and so they each have a equivalent industry version. There’s a top rate advert-free model with in-app buying after which a freemium model with merchandising – our major income circulation.


You have got each raised funding from Nokia Boom Companions. What is going to this funding let?

Markus: It has helped us to start out engaged on new initiatives extra speedy – we have already got a few new video games within the pipeline. We had been additionally ready to develop the corporate a little sooner and the funding will supply us the chance to position extra advertising effort at the back of our sport launches. It additionally permits us to fail with a few of our video games as this business remains to be very a lot a success-pushed industry.

Daniel: For us it’s no longer concerning the money in any respect. We’ve been money waft certain virtually from day one. The driving force for us was once in point of fact to get a associate onboard who may assist us develop and change into considerably larger. NGP has a world community, so in order to assist us prolong the attain of our video games to new markets. And usually it’ll assist transfer the corporate up a notch.

You each have a protracted historical past in mobile gaming; are you able to share a profession spotlight and a lowlight?

Markus: I believe the lowlight of my occupation is the time after I used to be making video games in line with SMS messaging – it simply wasn’t a just right platform. Spotlight is extra contemporary, and it was once once we began the mushy launch trying out with Supernauts. At last items are coming collectively and we’re amazed with the aid of what our customers are doing.

Daniel: A spotlight has obtained to be ultimate December after we noticed downloads double day by day for weeks in the United States for our sport Ruzzle. These weeks have ben the craziest weeks of my existence! A lowlight is from the time after we launched on Android and had outsourced the improvement – the standard ended up being truly negative. Having a sport in the market that you simply weren’t truly pleased with used to be an actual lowlight for me.

Any guidelines for sport builders in the market who’re constructing their first recreation?

Markus: Take note of important points – preserve it easy and easy, make the whole thing really feel very pure and take note of the loading instances, It’s a distinct target market who play mobile phone video games in comparison with Xbox as an example. And for those who haven’t developed video games sooner than, it’s most definitely a good suggestion to sign up for probably the most prime recreation firms like Grand Cru first.

Daniel: Come and work for MAG Interactive! However when you design your personal, remember the session instances – that you can simplest demand a few minutes of consideration out of your gamers.

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