PocketGamer.biz Week That Was: Unity acquires Applifier, Kabam acquires Phoenix Age, and King might soon be worth $7.5 billion
by Matthew Diener 15/3/2014
Manufacturer: Steel Media
Format: Android, iPhone, PG.Biz, iPad, 3DS, PS Vita, Windows Phone
T.S. Eliot famously called April the cruelest month - and we're prepared to label March as the busiest.
With the 28th annual Game Developers Conference looming in a few days and two high-profile acquisitions announced, it would take a lot to dethrone March of this dubious honour.
Oh, and Flappy Bird
might be coming back.
No one knows what the weeks ahead have in store for us, but if you're curious about what you might have missed in the week that was - well, you've come to the right place.GDC
If you'll be in San Francisco next week for GDC, or will be following our coverage here, we've got some links for you.
- First, our Mobile Gaming Mavens hashed out what themes they expect to dominate the show.
- For those in the Bay Area, we've also got our ultimate GDC 2014 Party Guide.
- Although you really don't need to look further than our St. Patty's Day party on Monday night.
- iOS 7.1 now prominently labels apps with IAPs in search results.
- And speaking of IAPs, our first Charticle this week examined whether Dungeon Keeper's IAP plan has backfired.
- While the second examined Castle Clash's rise to global mobile strategy dominance.
- In an attempt to be more flexible, Vungle and InAppCoins added bitcoin as a payment method.
- And, surprising no one, a company is sending out infringement notices to developers in an attempt to trademark the word "Flappy".
Discovery, user acquisition, and retention
- Speaking on their recent deal, Unity's CEO David Helgason and Applifier CEO Jussi Laakkonen talked about how they're looking to make developers' lives easier.
- Twitch's VP of marketing Matthew DiPietro said he was confident that its 45 million monthly visitors will help it find purchase in mobile.
- While Fireproof's Barry Meade said he wouldn't rule out a F2P game - assuming the model supports the hypothetical game in the first place.
- Lee Bradley gave us a look at the making of Nyamyam’s beautiful paper puzzler, Tengami.
- And Martine Paris reported that SXSW was apparently already over mobile gaming and was looking for the next thing.
- Dot Warrior Games shared its thoughts on why Japanese indies need to blossom and create the 'anti-Puzzle & Dragons'.
- Oscar Clark, meanwhile, gave a teardown of statistics and whales - noting that F2P success isn’t about percentage points.
Funding, acquisitions, personnel, and shutterings
- Chartboost unveiled two new tools - Chartboost Video and InPlay - that aim to transform user acquisition through video and thematic ads.
- While DeNA hooked up with Zedge to cast a wider UA net.
- GungHo, meanwhile, announced that Puzzle & Dragons has racked up over 3 million downloads in the United States.
- Kabam spent a rumoured $90 million to pick up Bay Area developer Phoenix Age.
- While Unity announced the acquisition of Everyplay provider, Applifier.
- And Google gobbled up what's left of Green Throttle games, fueling speculation that it's ready to enter the microconsole market.
- Next Games, seen by many as the next big thing from the Nordics, raised $6 million in series A funding.
- And Will Luton left TinyCo, after joining up with the F2P developer just five short months ago.
San Francisco Week
- King's IPO share price valued the company higher than Zynga and GungHo, putting an upper limit of $7.55 billion on the company.
- ChangYou tripled down on mobile games with a $600 million developers program.
- And Spanish social gaming outfit Social Point pinned its hopes to mobile action-strategy to boost its 2014 sales up to $100 million.
Just ahead of GDC, we caught up with some of the Bay Area's biggest names to give a deep look at the city that's coming to define technological innovation and gaming.
- Double Fine's Greg Rice shared his opinions on the city, specifically his love of the 'crazy ideas' flying around the place.
- Gaijin Games picked up on this thread, and called San Francisco the city where 'amazing ideas' are brought to life.
- While Bastion creator Supergiant Games called it 'the city that has everything'.
- And to wrap up, we asked some of them all to explain the allure of San Francisco.
©2014 Steel Media Limited
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