With so much focus on Asia, North America & Europe, it is easy to overlook the rapidly growing Latin American market. At Casual Connect USA, Leandro Gonzalez, Co-founder and CEO of Trick Gaming Studios, was on a panel a made up of CEOs that discussed the potential of the Latin American market and how to effectively engage and monetize users in this market & demographic. To hear insights from four professionals, including Leandro, see the video below.
Leandro Gonzalez, Co-Founder and CEO of Trick Gaming Studios, claims his career was inspired by Mario Brothers and The Legend of Zelda. In fact, if he had no limits to his resources and time, he would create an adventure game that “feels like Zelda and Journey had a child.”
His dream job was working on video games, even as a small child. He got his first NES when he was only four years old and he immediately decided he would create video games. So when he eventually reached the point of creating his first game, it was very painful to abandon it after months of work, realizing it simply wasn’t fun to play. But, as he reveals, “I just move forward and live with the disappointment.”
At Trick Gaming Studios, while he most enjoys working with the games, he must wear many hats. Most of his time is taken up with business development and keeping the company focused in the right direction. His greatest challenge is making money from what he does, but the rewards come from seeing people playing his game.
Leandro’s background working as team leader and project manager in corporate companies has given him valuable experience leading teams and managing processes. The people he wants on his team are those with grit. And he knows they respect him; they think he never eats or sleeps.
Passion and Inspiration
The inspiration for Leandro’s games comes from his personal taste. He emphasizes, “The games I try to do have to be things I’d like to play.” His creative process begins with an idea and the game evolves from there. He creates the game design document, has a few people read it; then he tweaks it from there. He rarely has to worry about creative blocks and claims, “I still have a hundred ideas I want to implement. Can’t keep up with them.”
But he also reveals that this is a very hard career if you don’t have passion. If you do, he insists, it is the best job in the world. His own passion is revealed by the fact that the proudest moment in his career is making it to the point where he can make a living by doing what he always wanted to do.
In the near future, he expects mobile, or multi-platform experiences that don’t require the player to be in the living room, to be a continuing trend. He also feels, “Virtual Reality is going to be big, but I don’t see it becoming a trend soon, maybe in five years.”
Leandro’s enthusiasm for games continues into his spare time, lately with programming for virtual reality. He also enjoys reading.
Catherine Quinton is a staff writer for www.gamesauce.org. Catherine loves her hobby farm, long walks in the country and reading great novels.