L’éditeur de jeux vidéo Innogames maitrise du cross-platform

Par le

Le créateur de jeux vidéo Innogames est l’un des annonceurs les plus actifs au niveau mondial. Son best-seller qui compte plus de 150 millions de joueurs, Forge of Empires, s’offre un campagne TV mondiale à découvrir sur des chaînes comme la Fox, Comedy Central ou Eurosport. En France, les téléspectateurs pourront visionner le spot ci-dessous sur des chaines comme TF1, RMC, Histoire ou Ushuaia…

À ce jour, l’éditeur allemand emploie plus de 400 salariés de 30 nationalités différentes. Implantée à Hambourg, la société est à l’origine de succès majeurs tels que Guerre Tribale, Forge of Empires et Grepolis. Elvenar est son dernier jeu en date.. InnoGames travaille aussi étroitement avec Facebook pour perfectionner les outils marketing de l’éditeur. Grâce à ses propres données et à l’aide précieuse du réseau social, InnoGames a multiplié par 8 ses budgets marketing via Facebook. L’éditeur de jeux gratuits a gagné en précision et en impact.

Nous avons posé quelques questions à Armin Busen CPO chez Innogames

How did the mobile market change your company? (teams, technologies, etc…)

Before we underwent a mobile transition, InnoGames was (and still is) a market leader in browser-based gaming. When we saw the rise of mobile gaming, we wanted to bring our games portfolio to mobile platforms. The main driver for us through this transition was allowing our players to enjoy their games anytime and anywhere. Back then, there were no prevailing mobile game engines so our teams had to do a lot of testing to find the best technologies to enable cross-platform gaming.

As a company, we experienced a steep learning curve to educate ourselves on every aspect of mobile game development. It was not only a tech challenge since UI and UX design are completely different on mobile. Eventually by 2015 all our games became accessible on browser and mobile. In fact, our game Forge of Empires became a very successful cross-platform hit. Now our mission is to leverage the knowledge we have gained on our way for the development of mobile only titles.

Could you share more figures with us?

We have around 200 people directly working on our games: engineers, game designers, artists and QA personnel. About half of them work on our new titles in production while the other half operates and evolves our live games. Forge of Empires for example uses Adobe Flash for the browser and Cocos 2DX for the mobile versions of the game. The dev team operates cross-functional, meaning all new features for the game are jointly developed for both platforms. It uses a shared back-end infrastructure and new versions and updates are released on all platforms simultaneously. It is a highly complex system and the team is doing a great job on operating the game on a high level of quality.

Furthermore, we also have several games in production that focus exclusively on the mobile platforms. We use engines like Unity and Unreal as mobile client technologies that enable us to deliver high production values. Our structure consists of small teams of experienced seniors and highly talented employees to develop our mobile games. Our experience helps us with our new projects as we take all the learnings from our existing games with respect to e.g. UI/UX to build high quality mobile games. We are very excited to see these games go live in the future.

How do you see the game industry evolving on the mobile market in the future?

Mobile gaming is a global 30+bn market which will continue to grow and is now bigger than console. Product innovation has always been strong on mobile so I am sure that we will see more $-billion franchises arise on mobile over the next years. Having said that, I think free-to-play will continue to be the predominating business model on mobile. In the next years, I also believe we will see product innovation also driven by tech evolution, like what we saw when Pokémon GO used location-based services.

This will inspire other mobile games as it provides many interesting opportunities to make your game interact with your environment. Augmented Reality is another field where I am curious to see mobile gaming companies go. I am also interested to see how Virtual Reality evolves as it has also just made its first steps on mobile. So, the next years will be packed with many exciting new developments and I feel privileged to be part of such a dynamic and innovative industry.