Ricardas Jascemskas examined using social networks to promote games at Casual Connect Europe 2015. “As game developers, we need to use social networks as much as possible to fight for users’ time,” he says.
When the Soviet Union fell apart and Western and Asian technology began appearing in Lithuania, Ricardas Jascemskas was one of the first kids to try out console and computer games.
To him such things seemed to be something magical that must have come from a far away place. “At that time it seemed unbelievable that something like that could be created right here, that the game industry was somewhere far, far away,” he says. “So when the first opportunity came up to step into this industry, I took a chance at once.”
That opportunity came when he saw an online ad — which was unusual at the time — for a game reviewer at a local, kids-friendly gaming magazine. While the magazine didn’t last long, it gave him exposure and he was soon invited to create a new magazine for PlayStation, where his career really started.
His years as a gaming journalist helped him develop a natural way of speaking about games, translating technical terms and jargon into language everyday players and others can understand. He also learned to quickly adapt in fast-paced environments due to the complicated nature of magazine publishing.
Going with the Current
These things all helped prepare Jascemskas for his current role at Nordcurrent as their communications manager. Not only does he already have a degree of expertise, but even as a kid Jascemskas wanted an international job that involved speaking with people — making the job a particularly good fit.
As communications manager, Jascemskas is responsible for media relations, internal communications and “basically anything that involves written or spoken words from Nordcurrent to the world.” At Nordcurrent, he has overseen the company’s Facebook fans surpass the 1 million mark and taken part in the continuous management, expansion and creative engagement of Nordcurrent’s social community.
Jascemskas met developers from Nordcurrent as an editor at PC Gamer in Lithuania. When he decided to “jump the fence” from gaming journalism to a gaming studio, Nordcurrent, the oldest and biggest game studio in Lithuania, was the obvious choice.
While he says that all his work, both past and present, has been fun and interesting, the best part for him is knowing that it all matters to someone. “Be it kids’ letters and drawings or current app store reviews and comments in social media, the feedback from audiences is what keeps me, and I believe many developers, going forward and reaching for better experiences.”
Creativity is a Must
At Nordcurrent, he loves the different dynamics and creative processes involved in developing games. “I get to know many aspects of our development work and have a chance to show it to others in various ways,” he says. “Finding the best way to interest different audiences is a challenge, but a nice one.”
He notes that since communication involves many channels and possibilities, it can be difficult to find the right balance and ways to reach different audiences. Another challenging aspect of his job is making sure Nordcurrent stands out from the crowd. Consumers are bombarded by such a deluge of information and voices, he says, that it is absolutely imperative for companies to find their own voice and separate themselves from the rest of the crowd. “The way I see it is to keep it personal and fun, think from your audience’s perspective and find as many common interest points with players as possible.”
Some of his proudest career moments have come from helping those he has worked with develop that creativity and advance their skills to achieve success in their own lives. He says it has been fascinating to see fellow game reviewers become game artists, designers and even architects and music stars.
Looking forward, he hopes to be able to continue doing this while building new relationships. “It’s a long process developing close working relations and trust, and I really hope to continue doing the same in the game development industry.”
Casey Rock is a staff writer for Gamesauce. Casey loves rock climbing, hiking and singing in indie rock band Open Door Policy. He also streams games under the moniker The Clumsy Gamer. You can catch him on twitter @caserocko and @realclumsygamer.