Supercell-backed Papukaya creates cell video games for non-gamers

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With backing from Supercell, Papukaya is creating cell video games focused at individuals who don’t take into account themselves to be avid gamers. And in doing so, Papukaya hopes to redefine the that means of video games for “mainstream audiences.”

Final 12 months, Helsinki-based Papukaya raised $3.1 million from its fellow Finnish recreation maker Supercell, which generates billions of {dollars} in revenues from video games akin to Conflict of Clans and Conflict Royale.

The studio was began by Drussila Hollanda (who beforehand labored at Digital Chocolate, Rovio, Wooga, and Supercell) and Johannes
Ahvenniemi (Rovio, Critically). They’ve been joined by lead artist Saara Mäkinen (beforehand Rovio).

Hollanda is without doubt one of the uncommon individuals who have labored at Supercell and moved on to do one thing else. A veteran of 17 years in video games, she is from Brazil initially. However she made her technique to Finland to assist Supercell construct informal video games, at first to work on the informal farming recreation Hay Day.

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Leaving Supercell

A number of the later video games Hollanda labored on didn’t make it out the door, as Supercell usually kills video games that don’t work out. And as Supercell’s focus stayed on core gaming, Hollanda determined to depart to start out her personal firm.

“I actually love Supercell and the individuals in there,” Hollanda stated. “However as a result of my ardour has at all times been informal gaming and seeing the potential of those newer audiences, I needed to deal with it. Even from 10 years in the past, you possibly can already see how cell gaming was bringing so many new audiences into the fold.”

As she was leaving, Hollanda pitched the startup concept to Supercell, they usually determined to fund it.

“I preferred to see the form of video games performed by individuals who don’t take into account themselves avid gamers, and I made a decision the best way to sort out it isn’t from inside Supercell however truly beginning an organization from scratch,” Hollanda stated. “I pitched this to Supercell, they usually agreed to provide me funding.”

With Supercell’s backing, the studio is constructing video games for “a largely unserved market,” or those that don’t establish as avid gamers. Hollanda stated in an interview that the potential for video games remains to be big, as solely 10% of time spent on smartphones is devoted to gaming.

Supercell-backed Papukaya creates cell video games for non-gamers

Above: Papukaya has a crew of three.

Picture Credit score: Papukaya

To construct video games that enchantment to broader audiences, the studio attracts inspiration from different types of leisure akin to books, motion pictures, social media apps, or real-life hobbies. For his or her first recreation, the studio is specializing in partaking gamers with optimistic feelings and exploring common
subjects and themes like relationships and wellbeing.

“Our business usually views the video games market as made up of people that establish as avid gamers,” stated Jaakko Harlas, funding lead at Supercell. “In doing so, we’re turning a blind eye to the large inhabitants of non-gamers who would play video games – if solely there have been an organization growing the correct of video games for them. Papukaya has got down to be that firm, and to redefine what individuals do for enjoyable on their cell gadgets. We are able to’t consider anybody higher suited to pursue this chance than the uniquely certified founding crew of Papukaya.”

Papukaya is presently centered on market analysis, narrowing down its target market and constructing its first mental property. To energy its progress, the studio is seeking to rent a lead recreation designer and skilled builders.

The that means of Papukaya

The title Papukaya relies on a Finnish phrase for parrot. And since Hollanda cherished the a number of colours of parrots and the variety that represented, she determined to call the corporate after the phrase.

“For us, it has been essential for us to attempt one thing new,” she stated.

The funding will give the corporate loads of time to prototype and be taught and refine its video games. And whereas she isn’t giving freely the thought for the sport, she stated it’ll sort out common feelings and optimistic subjects to assist individuals escape and calm down. The crew has been taking a look at issues akin to interactive tales and sim video games like The Sims and Animal Crossing.

The corporate hopes to rent 12 to fifteen individuals.

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