Pocket PlayLab Company Outing 2014 : Kanchanaburi

    Company Outing 2014

    Our year end company outing recently took place in Kanchanaburi, a beautiful province filled with magnificent landscapes and amazing waterfalls. Close to 50 employees across different departments joined this year’s outing. As the company grew in size, we had to think of ways to bring everyone together so that the crew could meet, bond, and exchange experiences on a personal level away from the …Read More

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    Our year end company outing recently took place in Kanchanaburi, a beautiful province filled with magnificent landscapes and amazing waterfalls.

    Close to 50 employees across different departments joined this year’s outing. As the company grew in size, we had to think of ways to bring everyone together so that the crew could meet, bond, and exchange experiences on a personal level away from the office environment.

    After a four hour bus ride, we all met at Suan Sai Yok resort. A short welcome address was followed by a shared lunch. Then, the Playlab crew was separated into five teams for the first Playlab Challenge! The challenge consisted of four levels which ranged from blowing a bowl of flour to find 3 hidden rings to picking up table tennis balls using chopsticks. Each of the determined teams had to complete everything first in order to get the top prize – a free ATV ride!

    After the games and awarding of prizes, we played more sports, went rafting, and just enjoyed the great venue! The highlight of the night was our “1st Annual Pocket PlayLab Awards”! The awards was Pocket Playlab’s way of thanking members of the crew for their outstanding work. The 4 different categories for the awards were:

    1. The Playlab Award: The person who performed well and beyond their assigned responsibilities. This person demonstrated an exceptional proficiency and quality in his/her work, exhibited a commitment to self-development of his/her skills and knowledge and exhibited a willingness to help out as needed.
    2. Mentor Award: The person who guided others to grow their skills and as a person.
    3. Creative Award: The person who creatively found new ways to work, such as using new methods/tools, reducing waste, stretching resources and trying something new.
    4. The Happy Face Award: The person who put a smile on everyone’s face even on a stressful day.

    All four winners received highly coveted prizes: a Minion plush toy for the “Happy Face Award”, a Playstation 4 for the “Creative Award”, a GoPro Hero for the “Mentor Award”,and the Playlab Awardee got a brand spanking new iPhone 6!

    We ended the first day with parties taking place all over the resort, offering more opportunities to bond with colleagues.

    The second day started with an early breakfast. Then we checked out of the resort and headed to our next adventure! The HR team (who organised the trip perfectly, kudos to them) planned a hiking to Erawan Waterfalls. This natural wonder is regarded as one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Thailand and is famous for its seven levels of water dropping down over 1,500m. We then had an amazing lunch at a local restaurant. Finally, we all went to Srinakarin Dam Kanchanaburi later in the afternoon, to take our company photo and enjoy the view!

    Everyone had an amazing time during last year’s outing in Hua Hin, but this year was even bigger and better. The trip proved both exhausting and refreshing, gruelling yet truly memorable! Kanchanaburi was awesome! Everyone is looking forward to next year’s outing!

    Company Outing 2014

    Game Team – PlayLab

    Game team_PlayLab

    From Producers to Art Directors and Animators — we have a pretty diverse Game Team here at PlayLab! What do they have in common (besides their marvelous charm and dashing good looks)?! They all work hard and give their 100% to develop amazing and successful games! Ever wondered how big or small a game team can be? Well, it depends! The creation of a game from a concept to a finished product can …Read More

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    From Producers to Art Directors and Animators — we have a pretty diverse Game Team here at PlayLab! What do they have in common (besides their marvelous charm and dashing good looks)?! They all work hard and give their 100% to develop amazing and successful games!

    Ever wondered how big or small a game team can be? Well, it depends! The creation of a game from a concept to a finished product can take from several months to up to three years and can involve teams of 2 to 200 professionals. It all depends on what sort of game you are making.

    Let’s take an in-depth look into what the game team consists of, and what their individual job functions are.

    Structure of the Game Team:

    Producer

    A producer is the person in charge of overseeing the development of a game. His/ her job is to focus on five main areas: facilitating communication, planning development procedures, establishing scheduled milestones, monitoring the budget, and supervising the people on their team. Game teams consist of two to hundreds of people working simultaneously on separate tasks that, when combined, become a finished game. The producer is there to ensure that the right hand knows what the left hand is doing. If the game developers aren’t communicating with the level designers and animators, the resulting game will be a disaster. Equally important is clearly defining processes for asset approval and delivering those game elements through the pipeline from one stage of development to the next. The producer is responsible for publishing these processes and informing the staff.

    Finally, the producer must meet the team regularly to monitor the money being spent and where they are against the achievement of established milestones. If benchmarks are not being met, he or she will step in to help identify obstacles and will work with the senior staff to create and apply solutions – whether these be improving the tools the artists and programmers use, adding staff, or scheduling development time better.

    Game Designers

    Game designers are the ones who focus on the game and its mechanics. They devise what a game consists of and how it plays. They plan and define all its elements such as its settings, structure, rules, story flow, characters, objects, props, vehicles, gadgets available to the characters, interface design, and play modes. Once the game is designed, he or she communicates this to the rest of the development team who then develop the art assets and code the game to feasibility.

    Sometimes the Game Designer comes up with a game’s premise. Many times however, the core ingredients have already been defined and they have to figure out how to create the best game using these elements, within a defined budget and timeline.

    Game Developer

    Game developers are also known as programmers. They design and build programs that make the game work. They work on game logic i.e how the game interacts with the user.

    They also communicate with the game engine and put together a list of commands available in the game engine and make the game engine do certain things. Whenever we develop new games, these list of commands are re-used so we don’t have to develop new functions every time.

    Some of the main tasks of a Game Developer are:

    1. programming a test version of a piece of software
    2. testing installation and compatibility issues
    3. checking test results and fixing technical problems (known as bugs)
    4. installing a full version and carrying out final checks before going ‘live’
    5. maintaining and supporting systems once they are up and running

    Application Developer

    Application developers are the people who work in the platform team! They work on logic that is being shared across all games. These involve how to handle screen resolutions, how to handle inputs between different devices (when we switch from keyboard to mouse to touch screen), and how the app communicates with native functionalities among other things.

    They also help to standardize a set of functions that every game needs to tell the game engine what to do, which can be re-used by game developers when creating new games.

    Art Director

    The Art Director is one of the key persons during the game development process who oversees any high-level decisions that affect how the game plays, looks or sounds. He/she is responsible for the overall look and feel of the game.

    He also ensures the quality and style of the gameplay, artwork, music and audio assets that make up the final product.

    Graphic Artist

    Graphic artists are not ordinary artists because they don’t work under traditional tools and they work under limitation. They need to know the capability of the software and limitation of the hardware (i.e. how large could the image be, how many pixels could the image hold, how many frames of animation it can  handle etc.).

    Concept Artist

    The Concept artist takes an idea for something (a character, a location, an enemy, a weapon, etc.) and sketch it out, color it, and make it look good in many different positions. They show the artists exactly how they want that particular game asset to look like.

    Animators

    Animators are the ones who understand the dynamic of motion. They produce multiple images called frames, which when sequenced together rapidly create an illusion of movement known as animation. The images can be made up of digital or hand-drawn pictures, models or puppets. Animators tend to work in 2D animation, 3D model-making animation, stop frame or computer-generated animation.

    Backend Developer

    A back-end developer is a type of computer programmer who creates the logical back-end and core computational logic of a software or information system. The developer creates components and features that are indirectly accessed by a user through a front-end application or system.

    Back-end developers primarily develop and maintain the core functional logic and operations of a software or information system. They are the ones who connect the game to the server. They ensure that the data or services requested by the front-end system or software are delivered through programmatic means.

    Quality Assurance

    Quality Assurance are also known as “Game Testers”, who are responsible for investigating and catching bugs in the game before the game goes live to the public. They are also responsible to find the steps in reproducing a defect. Quality Assurance certifies that the game has no bugs and of the highest quality when being launched.


    These are the people who make it happen at PlayLab. Kudos to all!

    One-on-one with the Producer : Jungle Cubes

    Jungle Cubes

    About Jungle Cubes: Jungle Cubes is the greatest match 3 puzzle game to come along since, well… Juice Cubes! It’s an adventurous world of monkeys, fairies and other crazy characters where players drag cubes to match jewels, create awesome explosions, earn stars and gold in order to beat tricky levels! Aside from being incredibly addictive, it’s our broadest and most rapid cross-platform rel …Read More

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    About Jungle Cubes:

    Jungle Cubes is the greatest match 3 puzzle game to come along since, well… Juice Cubes! It’s an adventurous world of monkeys, fairies and other crazy characters where players drag cubes to match jewels, create awesome explosions, earn stars and gold in order to beat tricky levels! Aside from being incredibly addictive, it’s our broadest and most rapid cross-platform release ever.

    Jungle cubes is available worldwide for free on iTunes, Google Play and Amazon!

    It’s been nearly two months since the LIVE worldwide release of Jungle Cubes! But have you ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes???

    We are bringing you a one-on-one interview with the producer of your most loved game Jungle Cubes. Meet Saranpat “Jay” Thanadsornsarn, the Jungle Cubes producer at Pocket PlayLab:

    Saranpat Thanadsornsarn

    1. How long have you been in the mobile gaming industry and how do you think it has evolved?

    If by Mobile Gaming, you mean the smartphone era (iPhone and beyond), I have been around since the iTunes store started selling apps, but I was actually working on console games during that time (mostly Nintendo Wii). Nobody saw the potential of mobile games because during the era of J2ME games, the mobile pre-smartphone games market collapsed. A few short years after that, a game company I used to work with started porting their old games to iOS. Then out of the blue, browser-based games suddenly came into the picture with Zynga having great success with the launch of Farmville. But that era didn’t last long, as smartphones caught up with good device capability, they have become the center stage of the game industry. To answer the question, I think the road ahead is still very long and the definition of machines that people play their games on will transform itself several more times during the coming decades. I am just a humble game maker, I will adapt to whatever my players love to play on.

    2. What other memorable games or projects have you worked on in the past?

    Juice Cubes, of course.

    3. What do you like in these projects?

    It is the first product the team got to design and produce that met commercial success. As game developers, we don’t usually have many chances to make decisions related to our previous game’s features. But I am glad Jakob and Thomas gave us a good degree of creative freedom so people who worked for them back then still continue to do so today.

    4. How were you involved in the creation and development of Jungle Cubes?

    I manage the game’s production. It’s the first time that I gave game designers full autonomy on feature direction and game design.

    5. What, in your opinion, is the most fun feature of the game? Do you have any tips or tricks for players?

    I like how you can drag gems for a good amount of distance in this game. You have more control of the result compared to other games of the same genre. Try swirling your finger around and arrange multiple combinations in one go – its the key to winning most of the levels. :D

    6. What is next for Jungle Cubes?

    Expect more challenging levels with gameplay features that come along with them.

    7. In your opinion, what makes a good game producer?

    A good balance between creative freedom and discipline make a good game producer. Understanding all aspects of game production is also a huge plus. And above all, the leadership that holds the team true towards one vision that they strive together to achieve.

    DOWNLOAD JUNGLE CUBES:

    For Mobile & Tablet

    iPhone & ipad, App Store: http://playlabs.co/DownloadJungleCubes_iOS

    Android, Google Play: http://playlabs.co/DownloadJungleCubes_Android

    Kindle Fire, Amazon: http://playlabs.co/DownloadJungleCubes_Amazon

    For Desktop

    Facebook:

    COMING SOON!

    About Pocket PlayLab

    Pocket PlayLab is a leading developer of the world’s most popular casual games with over 22 million downloads. Founded in January 2012 and located in the heart of Bangkok, Thailand, Pocket PlayLab is the home of hits like Juice Cubes, Jungle Cubes and more hit games in the pipe! Completely free-to-play, they are available on mobile devices via Apple Store, Google Play, Amazon or Facebook.  For more information, please visit: www.pocketplaylab.com

    Anino PlayLab 2014 Annual Outing

    Company Trip- Anino Playlab

    Our 2014 Anino Employee Outing took place last week, with the entire team in attendance. We had the opportunity to connect face-to-face while mixing, mingling and lounging at Taramindu Beach resort in the beautiful province of Batangas in the Philippines. The team was looking forward to this annual event because: 1. This was the first retreat after the merge - Pocket PlayLab announces acquisi …Read More

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    Our 2014 Anino Employee Outing took place last week, with the entire team in attendance. We had the opportunity to connect face-to-face while mixing, mingling and lounging at Taramindu Beach resort in the beautiful province of Batangas in the Philippines.

    Company Trip- Anino Playlab

    The team was looking forward to this annual event because:

    1. This was the first retreat after the merge – Pocket PlayLab announces acquisition of Anino Games: 

    http://playlabs.co/PocketPlayLabAnnouncesAcquisitionOfAninoGames

    2. These outings are always fun! It’s the time of the year where everyone is in the same place outside office!

    The focus of this retreat was to have fun and get to know each other more!

    Company Trip- Anino Playlab Photo

    Here was our full schedule:

    Day 1 – FRIDAY

    Time Program
    5 AM – 6 AM Meet-up / Assembly at APL Office (Makati)
    6 AM Departure from APL office
    7 AM – 8 AM Breakfast/ stopover at Petron SLEX
    8 AM – 10 AM Travel to Taramindu/ on board games
    10 AM – 10:30 AM      ETA at Taramindu (Batangas)
    10:30 AM – 12 PM Games and Activities
    12 PM – 1:00 PM Lunch
    1 PM – 2 PM Check-in
    2 PM – 3 PM Awarding and picture taking
    3 PM – 5:30 PM Afternoon snack/ Freetime, Swimming
    5:30 PM – 6 PM Day trip departure
    7 PM – 8 PM Dinner
    8 PM – 12 AM Social/ Videoke FUN! FUN! FUN!

     

    Day 2 – SATURDAY

    Time Program
    7:30 AM – 8:30 AM Breakfast
    8:30 AM – 10:30 AM      Free Time
    10:30 AM – 11 AM Check-out
    11 AM – 12 PM Travel to D’ Farm
    12 PM – 1 PM Lunch at D’ Farm
    1 PM – 3 PM Socials
    3 PM Departure from D’ Farm
    3 PM – 6:30 PM ETA at APL Office (Makati)

    BUT what is a game developer outing without a little bit of competition? To showcase the camaraderie, athleticism, and competitive nature of the PlayLab crew, we had a “RELAY-THON” that included events from beer drinking, kayak races to puzzle solving. Teams were randomized so that people worked with other departments and teams. This created a unique bonding experience and explained the true meaning of teamwork!

    Company Trip- Anino Playlab

    Company Trip- Anino Playlab

    The trip proved both exhausting and refreshing, grueling yet truly memorable! Everyone is looking forward to next year’s outing!

    Company Trip- Anino Playlab

    The best task management tips from the “Gurus”

    Before starting this blog let’s all go back to May 2014 when our CEO Jakob Lykkegaard Pedersen talked at Casual Connect about the story behind Pocket PlayLab (watch video above). In the video you can watch him talking about how Pocket PlayLab started and some future goals he and the team wanted to achieve as a company! You might be thinking, so have those goals been achieved?! We can proudly s …Read More

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    Before starting this blog let’s all go back to May 2014 when our CEO Jakob Lykkegaard Pedersen talked at Casual Connect about the story behind Pocket PlayLab (watch video above).

    In the video you can watch him talking about how Pocket PlayLab started and some future goals he and the team wanted to achieve as a company!

    You might be thinking, so have those goals been achieved?! We can proudly say YES, most of them have!

    We’ve grown to more than double in people, we have acquired Anino Games (now Anino PlayLab); the leading game developer in the Philippines and we have kicked off 3 new games to soft launch since then, but…. it all started out small.

    Pocket PlayLab Partners

    Thomas Andreasen (Founder & CGO), Jakob Lykkegaard (Co-Founder & CEO), and Kasper Kragelund (Co-Founder & CFO) are the 3 pillars of Pocket PlayLab. They all had a dream that they wanted to achieve and they made their dream come true.

    So, how did they acquire so much? They all have one thing in common: they’ve learnt that the key to success is not about working harder, but working smarter. They’ve perfected the art of “task management”.

    If there’s one truth that applies to the business world, it’s that entrepreneurs are always busy. Especially in the early days, it’s difficult to take a break, to slow down. You aim for a milestone and think that after you reach it you can take it easy for a while, but the truth is you won’t get any less busy. As you become more successful you’ll just have more and more to do.

    Or will you?

    This is where task management comes in. For you to be able to work productively while staying in good health and maintaining a work-life balance!

    Jakob Lykkegaard (Co-Founder & CEO)

    For Jakob task management is mainly a point of making sure that you remember everyone that asked for your help and any task or idea you got.

    His mantra is to divide everything he does into 4 tools that does different thing and that he uses daily:

    1. Trello

    He uses it to create any internal task that he has to do, in case it is something that he later might have to assign someone else internally in PlayLab.

    However the thing he uses it for the most is following other people’s tasks, so he doesn’t have to disturb them during work and doesn’t assign them anything when he knows they are working on something important.”

    2. Email

    He checks his email on his phone as soon as he wakes up, to sort out anything that he doesn’t have to reply to or can get a quick “go ahead” type of answer. This means that when he gets to work he can focus only on the emails that he has to make longer answers for or give a longer thought. Good thing about skimming them when he wakes up, is that he can think of the right answer in the shower or while driving to work.

    3. HipChat

    Jakob says, “It might not be seen as a task management tool, but since we send close to no emails internally in PlayLab because of HipChat, I still see it as a tool for tasks, as I use it to take in very quick tasks or questions throughout the day and make me handle smaller tasks from others quickly between doing other work.”

    4. Evernote

    He uses this tool mainly for thoughts or ideas that he has while doing something else (which means a ton) and to remind him for a later point to either continue working on the idea, or to discard it after giving it a longer thought. he says, “Evernote is great for writing more complex ideas that often can turn into Tasks or presentations.”

    Thomas Andreasen (Founder & CGO)

    Thomas mantra is simple i.e to stay focus on low hanging fruits and things that have high impact, then the small stuff seems much easier to complete. He is using Trello as reminder for all outstanding tasks. He says, “ Trello is great for having an overview of more complicated tasks, and easy to follow progress of a task.”

    Kasper Kragelund (Co-Founder & CFO)

    Kasper believes that it depends upon individual and what works for who. For him he has two matras in getting stuff done:

    1. His mail inbox is his task list and his only task list. As soon as something is done, he archives the email. He also sends emails to himself with to-do tasks. He always tries to keep his inbox below 10 emails!

    2. He believes in getting the task done and staying focused by removing all distractions, like Facebook, chats, etc. and only have those tools opened those are required to be completed at hand and stay at the task until it’s done.

    He says, “these approach matches his overall approach to everything; keep it as simple as possible and reduce everything to it’s simplest form – like an equation problems/tasks are much easier to handle in its simplest form.”

    Hope these task management tips from the Gurus help you to organise your time!

    Philippine Game Development Festival 2014 – Anino PlayLab

    Philippine Game Festival 2014_Anino PlayLab

    It was that time of the year again where game developers, students, and game enthusiasts from around the country gathered in one place to celebrate Philippine gaming at it's finest. Let's take a peek shall we? The Game Developers Association of the Philippines (GDPA) hosted the annual Philippine Game Festival 2014 (October 3-4). The theme of the festival was “Live To Play” which was all ab …Read More

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    It was that time of the year again where game developers, students, and game enthusiasts from around the country gathered in one place to celebrate Philippine gaming at it’s finest.

    Let’s take a peek shall we?

    Philippine Game Development Festival 2014 - Anino PlayLab_01

    The Game Developers Association of the Philippines (GDPA) hosted the annual Philippine Game Festival 2014 (October 3-4). The theme of the festival was “Live To Play” which was all about the fun in making games and bringing game ideas to life through creativity and innovation

    The Philippine Game Festival is the largest gathering of game enthusiasts, designers, developers and the entire gaming industry in the Philippines. Present in the event was the “Emperor” himself, Alvin Juban, the president of the Game Development Association of the Philippines with special guest, Senator Paulo Benigno “Bam” Aquino, to introduce the main event.

    Anino Playlab, formerly Anino Games, the pioneer of the gaming industry in the Philippines along with other game development companies such as White Widget, Quickfire, Klab Cyscorpions, etc also attended this amazing event!

    Philippine Game Development Festival 2014 - Anino PlayLab_02

    The event showcased the best of the best of what the Philippine gaming industry has to offer from casual games to RPG games, mobile to even console gaming and so on and not to mention – tons of freebies, yeah ALL THERE!

    About Pocket PlayLab

    Pocket PlayLab is a leading developer of the world’s most popular casual games with over 22 million downloads. Founded in January 2012 and located in the heart of Bangkok, Thailand, Pocket PlayLab is the home of hits like Lost Cubes, Juice Cubes and more hit games in the pipe! Completely free-to-play, they are available on mobile devices via Apple Store, Google Play, Amazon or Facebook.  For more information, please visit: www.pocketplaylab.com

    Slush 2014 Event at Playspace @Pocket PlayLab

    Flash Back Friday!!! Pocket PlayLab got the amazing opportunity to host "Slush Event" last Friday (26th September, 2014)! So... what is SLUSH? Slush is a non-profit event organized by a community of entrepreneurs, investors, students and professional music festival organisers. Flashback: Slush Bangkok partnered with PocketPlayLab, Jetradar.co.th, and UpToPromo to bring a great pitching opportu …Read More

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    Flash Back Friday!!!

    Pocket PlayLab got the amazing opportunity to host “Slush Event” last Friday (26th September, 2014)!

    So… what is SLUSH?

    Slush is a non-profit event organized by a community of entrepreneurs, investors, students and professional music festival organisers.

    Flashback: Slush Bangkok partnered with PocketPlayLab, Jetradar.co.th, and UpToPromo to bring a great pitching opportunity to 8 startups on 26th September ’14.

    The winning startup was: Washbox24

    Launched in 2013, Washbox24 is an innovative laundry service. The startup has been invited to Slush 2014 in Helsinki and received:

    a. Flights by Finnair

    b. Accommodation

    c. Exclusive access, including the opportunity to take part in the Slush pitching competition

    The finals will be held in front of a worldwide audience at Slush 2014 in Helsinki, Finland on November 18th – 19th.

    Find more information about Slush 2014 HERE

    About Pocket PlayLab

    Pocket PlayLab is a leading developer of the world’s most popular casual games with over 21 million downloads. Founded in January 2012 and located in the heart of Bangkok, Thailand, Pocket PlayLab is the home of hits like Lost Cubes, Juice Cubes and more hit games in the pipe! Completely free-to-play, they are available on mobile devices via Apple Store, Google Play, Amazon or Facebook.  For more information, please visit: www.pocketplaylab.com

    Meet our AMAZING intern!

    Pocket PlayLab QA Team

    This time last year, Pocket PlayLab had handful of employees. Today, we have 80 plus 1 intern! As indie game developers we are always drowned in some or the other work. At times it becomes so hectic that we don’t even get proper time to sleep. Midst this, we get a helping hand in the form of interns. This year, we have one such intern, an enthusiastic student from one of the most prestigious U …Read More

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    This time last year, Pocket PlayLab had handful of employees. Today, we have 80 plus 1 intern!

    As indie game developers we are always drowned in some or the other work. At times it becomes so hectic that we don’t even get proper time to sleep. Midst this, we get a helping hand in the form of interns.

    This year, we have one such intern, an enthusiastic student from one of the most prestigious Universities of Thailand.

    Internship at Pocket PlayLab

    Anuj Ramakant Tripathi joined us back in March this year. He is a graduate student at Stamford University doing his MBA in Information Technology. Anuj is handling most of the duties of Quality Assurance monitoring, analyzing and testing our current games plus upcoming game titles. He works closely with development teams across Pocket PlayLab to ensure they have the resources they need to produce polished, high quality results.

    Before joining Pocket PlayLab he worked at one of the number one banks in Bangkok, Kasikorn Bank. He worked there for 3 years as a “Core Test Analyst” where he tested the core banking system for loans. Currently, along with doing intern at Pocket PlayLab he is busy doing his thesis on video games business ecosystem in APAC region! We wish him luck.

    Here’s a rapid fire questionnaire for him, where he shell out some secrets…

    1.Why did you want to intern at Pocket PlayLab?

    7 months ago, I was searching for an internship in Bangkok where I could observe my MBA learnings. One common friend of mine and Jakob (Our CEO) suggested me to forward my resume to Pocket PlayLab. I was selected for the interview and right from my interview day I knew that I belonged here. During my interview I found out that there is a lot that can be done to implement quality assurance processes (which I expertised while working 7 years for competitive Indian IT industry) as the company was growing. This exactly matched with my long term goal of active quality contribution to software industry in APAC region. So, I decided to join Poket PlayLab.

    2. Which part of the job you like the most?

    Pertaining to Job; the multicultural environment, flat team structure, direct contribution to world mobile games business ecosystem and support from management & peers are all I am enjoying the most. In addition, overall care of employees and facilities of product based company are something to mention about that I was missing in my last Job.

    3. What does a typical day in the office look like for you?

    Being a QA guy every day is challenging. When our developers make games they think it works fine. But we have to think exactly opposite.

    Along with our normal QA activities we have to take care of customer complaints of our live games. The most challenging part is, along with validation of correctness of game, we have to take care of it’s fun factor too which can just be felt and can’t be measured mathematically. There is a little responsibility pressure of delivering the quality approved game on time to game producers but I enjoy working under pressure. Moreover pressure here is far lesser than my last job of QA in banking industry.

    4. What have you learned so far?

    My best learning in here is reading the market and delivering the product as customer demands. Google, Apple and Amazon have provided an excellent feedback system for their mobile platform apps which makes it possible to monitor the live games performance at micro level. We do changes in games based this feedback and relaunch the games.

    5. What are the things you expect from the company in reference to learning?

    Usually there is more focus on development in growing companies. Since PocketPlayLab is earning the brand value exponentially, further down the line I expect more focus on quality assurance of our games too. There are various examples in our industry where brand name got negatively affected due to minor quality errors which could have been easily avoided by a set quality processes. The latest example is quality issues in Apple as detailed in this article from Business insider – http://www.businessinsider.com/the-apple-employee-overseeing-ios-8-update-also-oversaw-apple-maps-2014-9?&platform=bi-androidappThese quality issues have put a dent on Apple’s brand image of being a flawless mobile makers.

    We would like to welcome him to the Pocket PlayLab.

    Needless to say we’ve grown very quickly and we are excited to welcome new, great talent to our team.

    Current job openings at Pocket PlayLab http://pocketplaylab.com/careers/

    About Pocket PlayLab

    Pocket PlayLab is a leading developer of the world’s most popular casual games with over 22 million downloads. Founded in January 2012 and located in the heart of Bangkok, Thailand, Pocket PlayLab is the home of hits like Juice Cubes, Jungle Cubes and more hit games in the pipe! Completely free-to-play, they are available on mobile devices via Apple Store, Google Play, Amazon or Facebook.  For more information, please visit: www.pocketplaylab.com

    Want to know how to build an Indie Gaming Studio? Learn from the experts – Jakob and Saiyai

    Indie Gaming Studio

    Last Tuesday we had an amazing chance to host “Games in Asia Meetup in Bangkok” at Playspace @Pocket PlayLab! The event’s main focus was to talk about indie gaming studio in Thailand and most importantly how to build an indie gaming studio. They had two guest speakers, Jakob Lykkegaard and Saiyai Sakawee who shared some insights on building an indie studios. So who are Jakob and Saiyai?! …Read More

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    Last Tuesday we had an amazing chance to host “Games in Asia Meetup in Bangkok” at Playspace @Pocket PlayLab! The event’s main focus was to talk about indie gaming studio in Thailand and most importantly how to build an indie gaming studio. They had two guest speakers, Jakob Lykkegaard and Saiyai Sakawee who shared some insights on building an indie studios.

    jakob_+_saiyai

    So who are Jakob and Saiyai?!

    Jakob Lykkegaard, then an university dropout is now a Co-Founder of Pocket PlayLab, the biggest independent mobile game developer in South East Asia.

    Saiyai Sakawee, a self-proclaimed tech “nerd” (which she definitely is!) is a Co-Founder and CMO of MSeed Asia, Thailand’s first startup accelerator of game.

    They both have lots to share about their experience from how they got into gaming industry to the challenges they had setting up the Indie Gaming Studios.

    Let’s see what they have to say:

    1. How did you get into the game industry?

    Jakob: Before starting Pocket PlayLab I co-founded Pagemodo, the first custom Facebook Page builder based on templates. We learned a lot of tough lessons on culture and business building, but never gave up on the vision and later sold the company close to its peak time, to Webs Inc. and later Vistaprint. After selling my first startup I ended up investing in new startups and ideas in Bangkok and Pocket PlayLab was one of them. As I like to say, “By accident I found a great team that was looking for new opportunities and couldn’t think of anything more fun than games.”

    Saiyai: MSeed is started by a group of people who are not only passionate about the game industry but have many years of experience in the game business from game studio, game publisher, and also Thai Game Association.

    2. What is the indie game community in Thailand like? Is the community important for the growth of your studio?

    Jakob: Yes, the community is very important for us as the best games are usually created by sharing infos and ideas. It also helps get Thailand more into the spotlight of international companies looking for partnerships or investing.

    Saiyai: In the past, a group of Thai game developers would join the forum http://forums.thaigamedevx.com/ which started 10 years ago. This is a place where they exchange idea and how to improve the product. Of course, with Facebook, now the community got stronger online. However, it’s not a strong one community but individual ones – based on friend cycle. Now MSeed is working with a government sector SIPA to create an official community for Thai game developers.

    3. Did you have any challenges setting up indie studios in Thailand?

    Jakob: Some of our main challenges were that not a single member of the original team had ever built any server or mobile game platform to the size and scale we were aiming for. But we overcame the challenges by trial and error. Our entire team has learned so much from that process that they are now among the best in the field and as a gaming company we are now attractive enough to pull in guys that have worked with big scales and games before.

    Saiyai: Language barrier is the key problem for the Thai game industry in general!

    4. What are you doing in terms of marketing for your studio?

    Jakob: We do a whole lot of events and speeches, but I prefer that people find us through the success of our games and not the other way around.

    Saiyai: MSeed is an accelerator program. We help our portfolio teams market their games by providing the commercialization money and partnership. In addition, we also bring in mentors that can help on this part to work with the teams.

    5. How are you financing the studios at this stage? What about investors? Do you think indie game studios should approach investors? What are some common problems indie game studios in TH have when it comes to getting funding?

    Jakob: We finance it fully by the revenue of our games, it took us around 2 years of spending from our own pockets to reach todays stage and never had any investors in!

    Saiyai: It all depends on the studio. What their exit plans are. As for the common problem – what i see right now is that the indie studios don’t have the understanding of how VC or investors work. The knowledge of business planning or even understanding the term paper is still lacking. In addition, some of the studios are very good at making games but not monetization, that makes it hard for them to raise fund or make the company looks appealing for the investors.

    6. What advice would you give to other individuals who are thinking about starting their own indie game studio?

    Jakob:Start with a small team and small game, you will need to fail a few times and your next games become so much better from all your learnings of failed games.

    Saiyai: Be open minded and willing to share. One thing I’ve noticed is that people are scared to let other people try their games – that’s so weird. I mean, they should want to listen to as much feedback as possible before they officially launch the game.

    7. What’s next for…?

    Pocket PlayLab: That’s the question that still keeps me excited. We are once again moving faster and scaling to a bigger scale than anyone of us has ever seen. We are constantly changing to help the company and culture handle longer term vision and now have the opportunity to plan longer than just the next game title. We have started getting a lot of international attention from partners and investors that I have always dreamt about working with. With a strong plan and an awesome team, it can’t happen fast enough.

    Mseed Asia: As for MSeed, we want to make this first batch of the accelerator successful. That will prove that the Thai game indies can compete in the world level.

    About Mseed Asia

    The MSeed team has more than 10 years of experience as managers of world-class online gaming businesses, game developers, academics and marketers. They make dreams come alive for the younger generation who are passionate about gaming, and to make sure that the name of the Thai game startup is recognized on a global level. For more information, please visit: www.mseed.asia/

    About Pocket PlayLab

    Pocket PlayLab is a leading developer of the world’s most popular casual games with over 22 million downloads. Founded in January 2012 and located in the heart of Bangkok, Thailand, Pocket PlayLab is the home of hits like Juice Cubes, Jungle Cubes and more hit games in the pipe! Completely free-to-play, they are available on mobile devices via Apple Store, Google Play, Amazon or Facebook.  For more information, please visit: www.pocketplaylab.com

    Enchelon Ignite: Startups pitching at Playspace @Pocket PlayLab

    Enchelon Ignite is doing what it does best - giving startups chance to present their creative business ideas! Today startups are pitching for funding and international media exposure. This is the 2nd stage in the 4 stage process. The judges will select the most promising startups to exhibit and pitch during the Echelon Thailand on September 18! Find more information about Enchelon Thailand 2014 …Read More

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    Enchelon Ignite is doing what it does best – giving startups chance to present their creative business ideas!

    Today startups are pitching for funding and international media exposure. This is the 2nd stage in the 4 stage process. The judges will select the most promising startups to exhibit and pitch during the Echelon Thailand on September 18!

    Find more information about Enchelon Thailand 2014 HERE

    About Pocket PlayLab

    Pocket PlayLab is a leading developer of the world’s most popular casual games with over 21 million downloads. Founded in January 2012 and located in the heart of Bangkok, Thailand, Pocket PlayLab is the home of hits like Lost Cubes, Juice Cubes and more hit games in the pipe! Completely free-to-play, they are available on mobile devices via Apple Store, Google Play, Amazon or Facebook.  For more information, please visit: www.pocketplaylab.com