By Joe Osborne From games.com
Sure, Zynga has created some of the most popular social games around, but it has also created its own competition. (See: EA, Disney, Wooga.) Elena Masolova, the 27-year-old founder and CEO of Russian social (and mobile) game developer and publisher Pixonic, was inspired by the company's success in founding her own game company. Since its creation in 2009, the company has created 40 games for local and European networks, but has big plans for its global expansion.
Ahead of opening its third (and first international) office in San Francisco, Pixonic published Little Helper (pictured below) for iPhone and iPad. First released on Russian and European social networks, Little Helper is the mobile version of a simulator game similar to Pet Society, but with heavy Russian themes. Despite the visible cultural influences, Little Helper hit the U.S. top 10 free games chart in September, hopefully setting a precedent for future releases.
Pixonic is also slowly making headway on Facebook with The Island: Castaway, a farming-type social game that proved largely successful on local Russian networks. While it's unfortunately not doing so well on Facebook at the moment, according to AppData, Masolova looks to make a splash in the U.S. and around the globe the old-fashioned way.
"I don't think there's some secret sauce--you just need to make high-quality games that promote themselves," Masolova said. "Second, you need to be very numbers-oriented in marketing. I think it's a numbers game, and you need to look at the numbers constantly. The goal by the end of the year is to launch several high-quality games on Facebook."
The Russian game creator and publisher also looks to bring six of its most popular social games to iOS and Android devices, likely in the same vein as Little Helper, which was developed for Pixonic by MobyTail. However, Masolova says that the company has its 46 plus employees working on three mobile games from scratch. Despite coming into the Facebook and mobile games space just as the big players begin to exert their dominance, Masolova is confident that Pixonic will succeed.
"For the first three months of the company's existence, we were focused on Russian markets in social networks," Masolova says. "I think for the time it was the right decision, but now we can move to Facebook and other networks and feel very comfortable there."
Subscribe to Daily Browser Games News!