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What is AppyNation?
Welcome to the AppyNation blog hosted on Gamesbrief. This is going to be a no holds barred, warts and all commentary of our experiences in the world of digital games development and publishing, or at least that’s the intention. To date we have actually done quite a lot, without actually celebrating too much. Such is the life in a start- up. Our plan is to blog once a week and cover how we got to the start line but more importantly deal with the live issues as they come up. To look at our aims and objectives, whilst dealing with the daily tasks that come at you relentlessly in the digital, connected world. So it will be in two parts, part historic account and part ‘now’.
So let’s just establish who we are and more importantly what we are setting out to do.
First up we are here because NESTA helped us come together as part of their innovation programme. We are a living blueprint and one of our jobs is to document our adventures in digital publishing so that others can follow the path or maybe learn from some of our experiences. ‘We will be successful, it is only a question of time’ is the company mantra and we have decided that AppyNation will be a ‘state of mind’ (thanks Kam Star for the inspiration). We need to be happy, nice and helpful at all times, no matter what. We are a mixture of six established games developers and the AppyNation team which currently numbers three. So in terms of location, we are truly virtual and currently work out of at least eight locations daily.
So AppyNation, a name incidentally we came up as a result of some proper collaborative brainstorming back in October of last year, is a digital publisher, owned by its developers which will be the voice and the business engine for the collective. In short we let the developers make the games and we will try our best to let the world know about them, why they are so good and importantly ensure that they are monetized to their optimum. Ultimately it is all about the quality and originality of our games, but we all know that a high quality game does not ensure success.
Our first task was building the team and with the help of NESTA and a lovely man called Chris Wright we held a series of presentations in London, York and Dundee and spelled out our vision of a digital publisher in the mould of Gathering of Developers. After 3 months of preparation, we eventually whittled down all the interested parties in to 6 founding partners, Finblade, Supersonic, Proper Games, Niffler, Lightning Fish and Onteca. Anyone who wanted to join the consortium had to pay in for shares which were matched by NESTA, thus building some working capital for the business.
So far this has been a unique experience for all of us, given that they are all running their own dev studios. As most people know, there is a major transition happening in the games market, not only from a packaged goods retail focus to a digitally distributed, connected device, platform agnostic future, but console development has become a very risky model for developers nowadays. In short, the old ways of working whereby developers usually looked to a traditional publisher to provide project funding, marketing, sales, distribution and sometimes more. In the world of digital, access to markets is full to the brim with potential customers, gamers and future fans. But that also means it is easier for everyone and thus the competition for attention and customers’ pennies, cents, Eurocents and all the other currencies is immense!
So that’s the background behind AppyNation and quite a lot has happened in terms of implementing the business. So stayed tuned for our next posts!