PocketGamer.biz Week That Was: San Francisco swaggers, Puzzle and Dragons roars, and Google responds to Game Center
By Matthew Diener 18 May 2013
PocketGamer.biz | Manufacturer:
Steel Media Ltd | Format:
Android, iPhone, PG.Biz, iPad
One of the biggest challenges any developer looking to make its mark in the mobile world faces is finding the right people to hire.
On that note, you'd think that devs based in San Francisco's booming Bay Area would have no problem scoping out the top talent, wouldn't you? In reality, however, almost the opposite is true.
Case in point: With both Mobile Gaming USA and Google's I/O 2013 taking place in San Francisco this past week, we asked some of the industry's biggest players in the city by the bay to give us their take on the state of mobile gaming in the area.
Their take? With so much talent packed into such a small area, competition to attract talent from big players and more agile indie studios is fierce.
Of course, they weren't the only people with something important to say on PocketGamer.biz this week. Check out the links below for a sample of some of the biggest stories in the mobile gaming business during the last seven days.
Tools and platforms
- Google responds to Game Center (two years later…) by unveiling of its cross-platform Google Play Game Services.
- Meanwhile, Rovio lifts the veil on its Rovio Stars publishing initiative by announcing Icebreaker: A Viking Voyage as the first third-party title to be pusblished by the Finnish mobile behemoth.
- Nvidia debuts a new hybrid Android gaming tablet/ handheld, the Shield, for the premium price of $350.
- Also in the N's, Nokia unveiled its Lumia 925 at an extravaganza of an event in London.
- Peter Relan, formerly of OpenFeint, looks to shake up the traditional mobile platforms by pioneering 'smart invites' between iOS and Android.
- Nintendo made waves by allowing fans to continue using in-game footage for YouTube videos, but only so long as Nintendo gets the ad revenue.
- While spending on mobile dropped in April, paying mobile gamers in the US are spending more than ever per month.
- GREE shutters its Beijing office following a sharp drop in the profits of its business in China.
- GungHo Online hits 13 million registered users in Japan and now has a market cap that exceeds Nintendo, mostly thanks to Puzzle & Dragons.
- Amazon gave out millions of dollars worth of Amazon Coins, a new virtual currency for their ecosystem that players can use to buy games and make IAPs.
- A Mobile Gaming USA panel suggested that traditional marketing is being overlooked and that companies should focus on email, virality, and ROI.
- On that note, Trademob's Adrienne Gauldie offers a few creative tips on user acquisition and engagement.
- Also from Mobile Gaming USA, some felt that mobile gamers were an insatiable lot with ever-changing (and ever-increasing) appetites.
- The subscription based GamePop is confident that Android gamers want an "all you can eat" model for their home unconsoles.
- What's the big deal with San Francisco anyway? Joseph Barron points out that Apple, Google, Facebook, and Zynga (among many others) all have a presence there.
- Further, Zynga's Colleen McCreary talks about what makes San Francisco such an appealing city for creative game studios.
- …but Storm8's Perry Tam shrewdly points out that moving to San Francisco isn't a shortcut to success.
- Outside of the Bay Area, Pole to Win Interactive's Ann Hurley notes that the free-to-play revolution is forcing developers to focus on quality and not quantity.