What do major smash hit game Snake, world’s first 5G network and six-figure funding have in common? The answer is Tampere, Finland’s second biggest gaming hub with over 20 companies in the industry focusing on growth and finding international competence. All with huge ambitions, top class knowledge and a hunger to claim the title in gaming from Finnish giants Rovio and Supercell. With stakes so high and the competition tight, one question obsesses the gaming community: who’s going to be the next name to make it BIG?
The global gaming market is estimated to reach over $137.9 billion by the end of 2018, and for the first time ever, half of the revenues is cashed in by mobile gaming according to Newzoo. Regarding Tampere, the city is witnessing a rise in launch of mobile games and services where companies like Colossal Order, Greener Grass, Traplight and BON Games combine expertise with a thriving work culture.
The office of Traplight is buzzing with ideas around its latest project in collaboration with local company Bon Games. Since its 2016 debut with UGC mobile game Big Bang Racing, Tampere-based mobile game developer Traplight has been on a roll with good news announcing the studio total investment to $5 million one year later. The company is currently expanding and working on building new games. Growth Manager Kseniya Tarasova (Russia) gives an insight into the company’s beginnings:
“Traplight started with doing contracting work for major companies like RedLynx and Supercell. Then we shifted our focus on creating own games and Big Bang Racing became the first independent product released. It’s been an amazing learning process with great players and positive feedback.”
Kseniya believes these are exciting times for the gaming industry:
“Who will come up with the next big product? We don’t know yet. I really hope it’s going to happen in Tampere because here we have ambition. We have a hunger to deliver amazing games and empower our players.”
On the other end of the spectrum yet not far from Traplight’s office sits CEO and Co-founder of BON Games, Ilkka Immonen. The company was designed for a specific niche and was born out of a desire to fill the missing gap of quality F2P tycoon games in app stores. The category has less competition and a modest CPI but compensates big time with some of the most committed and engaged players. Bon Games managed to raise $1.4 million in seed funding last year and attracted Finnish investors Polkuni Ltd and Nurmiranta Holdings Ltd. An avid investor with a sharp eye for business, Immonen has come to value the potential of international talent existing in Tampere.
“We have the best technological universities and a good mix of creativity needed in the gaming world. From an investor’s point of view, Tampere is a very promising city.”
It’s a win-win situation judging by two international talents’ perspectives, Daniel (South Korea) and Ruslan (Russia):
“The work culture enables people to get creative through the freedom they receive at a workplace. Finns respect personal time and ensure nobody gets burnt out. It’s crucial to have space for thinking in game design – that’s where new ideas come from.”
As for sharing the same room with his boss, there are no awkward looks over the shoulders. Only benefits, Ruslan concludes:
“At Bon Games, we have one big room and I always see Ilkka. I can speak to him anytime or even have lunch together. The freedom I receive comes with responsibility for my own decisions. It makes me give my best to deliver high-quality products. Those interested in working in the gaming industry have to be self-motivated.”
Are you an investor, marketer or a game professional curious to discover what Tampere mobile gaming scene has to offer? Join Traplight, BON Games, Kopla, Moido Games, 10tons and Hyperkani in a unique one-day conference to learn about the latest trends from top-notch speakers.
Book your free ticket here: https://www.mansegames.com/