DevelopmentExclusive Interviews

Vasiliy Sabirov: Making Games Better with Analytics

September 19, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton


Vasiliy Sabirov is Lead Analyst at devtodev, a full-cycle analytics platform that helps developers to improve their games. Vasiliy has seven years of experience in game analytics and describes his transition to devtodev as smooth and effortless. He began as a business analyst, then worked in a B2B service for games. He followed that with working for a game development company and from there to devtodev.

Making Decisions That Mean Something

Vasiliy Sabirov is Lead Analyst for devtodev

Vasiliy’s work as Lead Analyst covers three major areas. The first is helping developers understand why analytics is so important to games and how analyzing their games can make them better. At devtodev, this has included writing books, hosting webinars and, most recently, launching a free online course in game analytics. Vasiliy also participates in international gamedev events as a guest speaker, something that involves a great deal of travel and offers opportunities to exchange ideas and opinions with other professionals.

His second major area of responsibility is creating and improving the devtodev platform. He generates ideas for reports that are useful for different game projects in different genres and that help developers understand the meaning behind the numbers in their games. And he is also responsible for analytics outsourcing for some of their clients.

Vasiliy describes, “It is really important for me to feel that my decisions mean something and influence something for the best. And the more things I can influence, the faster those decisions are implemented, the better. I’m getting all those things working at devtodev.”


The 22nd Indie Prize Winners at Casual Connect Europe 2018

June 1, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton


Indie Prize London 2018 featured many exciting games that we will enjoy playing. The judging is now complete and Casual Connect Europe is happy to announce the winners and nominees in each category.

Best Game Audio award was given to Zebrainy ABCs, created by Zebrainy Limited

The winner of Best Game Audio is Zebrainy ABCs, created by Zebrainy Limited from Ukraine. This is an alphabet learning game for young children that takes them on a journey where they learn to construct each letter and then to know animals, objects and characters that begin with that letter.

Nominees for Best Game Audio were: LUNA the Shadow Dust, developed by Lantern Studio from the United Kingdom, a point-and-click puzzle adventure set in a fantasy world; Nishan Shaman by Next Studio from China, inspired by ancient Chinese Manchu mythology; and Hyperforma by Nord Unit of Russia, an arcade puzzle in a steampunk setting.

The winner of Best Game Design was EnigmBox by Benoit Freslom from France. EnigmBox is a puzzle game that requires you to use all the functionalities of your smartphone to solve the puzzles, including things like the location service, plug-in accessories and much more.


Casual Connect Europe 2018 Indie Prize Finalists from Eastern Europe

May 18, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton


Indie Prize London at Casual Connect Europe 2018 has attracted an outstanding variety of games from Eastern Europe. Role playing is featured in many games, and is perhaps taken to new heights in a game where the player literally chooses a role to play on stage. Many also combine role playing with different types of adventure, such as surviving on a sinking island or digging through caves or being lost in a desert. There are games that challenge the brain with puzzles, multiplayer games, beautiful learning games for children, and even games that take players into accurate representations of history. There is something in this group of games that will attract everyone.

Game Title: Theatre VR
Developer: Misterine
Platform: VR desktop/console
Country: Czech Republic

Theatre VR is the perfect game for aspiring actors and anyone who would like to experience what it would be like to be on stage. It allows you to choose a play and a role, then act that character. You say the lines while making gestures and moving around the stage. But you are not alone on stage; there are other characters driven by the computer. You can also create your own productions and share them with others and enjoy the play with your friends.

USA 2018Video Coverage

Anatoly Ropotov: Esports and Mobile | Casual Connect Video

March 3, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton


Are you a developer interested in the esport sector of the game industry? And, especially, do you want to expand the audience for your game? Could esports attract casual gamers while at the same time interesting pro-gamers and esports enthusiasts? These are difficult questions for developers; casual gamers and pro-gamers are at opposite ends of the gaming spectrum.

Anatoly Ropotov, CEO of Game Insight, has some solutions. Game Insight is one of the world’s leading mobile games companies. It was the first company to develop hidden object and tycoon games for social networks and mobile platforms and has since developed unique game experiences in a variety of genres. As CEO, Anatoly leads partner and platform relations and is also closely involved with game development, leading key games for the company.

Game Insight demonstrated the advantage of using a mobile-first mindset with the development and successful release of Guns of Boom, which solved the problem of creating a first-person shooter for touchscreens. Now they have turned their attention to making esports for smartphones.

At Casual Connect USA 2018 Anatoly presented the session Bringing Esports to Mobile. In it he shared his insights into creating a mobile esport game that will satisfy casual gamers as well the intense esport enthusiasts. To learn more be sure to watch the video of this exciting session.


Exclusive InterviewsIndie

Šarūnas Ledas: The Real Monster Buster

January 17, 2017 — by David Radd


Šarūnas Ledas is the CEO of Tag of Joy, developer of Monster Buster. The game recently won best Indie Game at GameOn Vilnius 2016, the largest video game conference in the Baltics which is dedicated to video games and the culture that comes with them. Monster Buster: World Invasion will also be shown off at Casual Connect Europe as part of Indie Prize.

“Our studio, Tag of Joy, has always been looking for ways to innovate games and gamified experiences technologically, visually and gameplay-wise. So, winning an award means that we are on the right path, and that people find our projects interesting. The same goes to the GameOn award – it’s an additional encouragement to keep on going and make the best game possible, while also presenting something new to the players,” said Šarūnas, adding, “Monster Buster will soon be released on iOS and Android, so we hope that showing it off at Casual Connect will help spread the word about the launch of the game.”


Nordic Countries & Northern Europe at Indie Prize Berlin 2017

January 14, 2017 — by Yuliya Moshkaryova


Three games from Finland and from Sweden, one game from Denmark, from Ireland and from Estonia, two games from Lithuania and eight games from United Kingdom will be showcased at the international Indie Prize showcase during Casual Connect Europe 2017. Among these games there are two games that were nominated by Game Nation Nomination Partners: Sweden Game Conference from Sweden and by GameOn from Lithuania.

Game DevelopmentPostmortem

Fun Kid Racing – Accidentally Born Successful Game

October 6, 2016 — by Industry Contributions


Tiny Lab Productions started its activity in early 2009 as MMORTS (massively multiplayer online real-time strategy) game developer and publisher, it was also a member of the first European accelerator of GameFounders and is one of its current active mentors.  Nebula 44, Orborun, Endless Horizons are just a few well-known company’s products. Despite moving on to browser games, they decided to try their luck in mobile as well. In 2012 after a first successful title for kids in the Google Play store, the  company shifted its business direction to the mobile games industry by creating casual and free-to-play mobile games for kids and toddlers. Their most popular game is Fun Kid Racing which recently hit 10 million downloads.

Europe 2016Video Coverage

Ricardas Jascemskas: Connecting with a Great User Experience | Casual Connect Video

May 10, 2016 — by Catherine Quinton


Ricardas Jascemskas headshotHow do you provide a great user experience? According to Ricardas Jascemskas, it takes a combination of support, social media and community management activities. Ricardas is a communications manager working with Nordcurrent’s social media, PR, community management and support activities, and is responsible for the constant and clear communication with players in a variety of forms.

At Casual Connect Europe, Ricardas shared the Nordcurrent teams’ ideas about direct communication with players and some of their best practices. One of the important points Ricardas makes is “everyone loves free stuff” so when things go wrong, “even if it’s not our fault, we may give some free gifts for the lost time.” In the constant search for ways to encourage connections with players, Ricardas suggests, “A screen shot is easy; ask for them from players.”

To learn more about Ricardas’ perceptions about developing a great user experience, watch this video of the full session.


For an more information about Ricardas, click here.

Tel Aviv 2015Video Coverage

Kiril Uljanov: Adventures Beyond the Limits of our Universe | Casual Connect Video

January 21, 2016 — by Catherine Quinton

'Make the tutorial an actual part of the gameplay, not a separate section.'–Kirik UljanovClick To Tweet

One of the most challenging aspects of game design is teaching people how to play your game without seeming like you’re teaching them. Kiril Uljanov discussed some of the do’s and don’ts of game tutorials during his Casual Connect Tel Aviv 2015 lecture: “Games should be fun and engaging from the very beginning,” Kiril says. “Reading a lot of informative messages is not fun nor engaging.” His full session is available for viewing below.


Big News: Nordcurrent is Expanding

October 19, 2015 — by Emily Baker


nordcurrent_logoVilnius, Lithuania – As the largest developer and publisher of free-to-play and casual games in Lithuania, Nordcurrent is proud to announce that they are opening a new development studio in Warsaw, Poland. Given the successful launch of hit game Cooking Fever, Nordcurrent is wanting to create more games with the highly-skilled new talent in the fast growing neighboring capital city.