A Glimpse of Games and Mobile Apps Development

by Noc Team on November 17, 2010

Shoaib Malik is currently working as the Country Manager at Mindstorm Studios. Yes, it is the same name which brought about revolutionary cricket for Pakistanis in the name of ‘Cricket Revolution’, and Shoaib was an important part of that team throughout the game’s production. He joined Mindstorm Studios as an Animation Lead in 2006. With his excellent skills and proven managerial abilities he was promoted to position of Country Manager at the company. With an association with the industry from the past nine years, Shoaib has a lot to enlighten us with, especially in gaming and application development arena. Let’s hear it from him on what he has to tell us about the gaming industry and mobile application development platforms.

Shoaib Malik, Country Manager, Mindstorm Studios

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CodeWeek: Mindstorm Studios took the industry by storm last year with Cricket Revolution, but where is it now and where does it stand today?

Shoaib: Mindstorm Studios was formed around four and half years ago. Cricket Revolution was our primary and leading project. It took us almost three and a half years to complete the first Pakistani Multiplayer PC cricket game. We successfully launched the most difficult and giant project. With it, we gained a lot of knowledge about video game development in terms of the processes, optimal methods and production techniques.

We took that knowledge and precious experience and applied it to the new business verticals and reformed Mindstorm Studios into a multi platform video game development house. Currently, we are working on many different projects and video games ranging from the iPhone, iPad, Android and Multiplayer Online 3D Browser Games.

Mindstorm Studios

CodeWeek: What makes Mindstorm Studios stand out in Game development in Pakistan’s Industry?

Shoaib: After a successful award winning launch of a PC multiplayer game at an international level, Mindstorm Studios was the first game development company that makes us stand out in Pakistan’s game development industry. To date, we have been the only company so far to achieve it and go this far.

Apart from that we are a product oriented company and we highly believe in producing and creating top quality products. Video games that we enjoy playing ourselves too.

CodeWeek: What has caused the recent burst of enthusiasm for game development in our industry?

Shoaib: Easy and streamlined access to the end users/consumers has been a major cause behind the boom in this industry. The fact that one can easily publish applications or video games is a great plus for many upcoming developers.

Earlier, markets like AppStore, Android Market and Ovi, there was no straight ahead access to the consumers. One was limited to selling their games only to the mobile carriers and those carriers would control and monetize the distribution.

Secondly, hand held devices are growing every day, and most importantly market offers a lot of growth and space for newbie, due to the large number of people who own such devices.

CodeWeek: Can you tell us a little about the present gaming industry and the future of game developers in it?

Shoaib: Speaking internationally, the video gaming industry is huge, it’s a multi billion dollars industry as a whole. However, In Pakistan the game development industry is emerging and evolving as it’s moving along. So, I’d say it’s fairly new industry for us here as far as the development is concerned. And most of the companies are either developing for the hand held devices or the web.

CodeWeek: Over the years Apple has changed the landscape of gaming? Do you consider iPhone and iPad as viable and sustainable gaming platforms?

Shoaib: Mobile game development is a global market. And Apple has played a remarkable role through the AppStore in it. It has also certainly pushed a lot of development houses, large and small both, to shift and start developing video games and apps for mobiles.

Before Appstore emerged in the market, gaming was a lot about either web or the consoles including PCs. So the target market distribution was either the people who were hardcore gamers or the casual ones who used internet and social media platforms.

But with successful launch of the AppStore, the market evolved and changed tremendously. Many, who were casual gamers, were then introduced with their favorite games on their phones. Thus, using PC for Games has slightly superseded. World of entertainment has entered right in their hand.

iPhone and iPad are definitely sustainable and viable gaming platforms because of their speedy penetration into the market. However, to get your application noticed at the AppStore, it becomes quite difficult due to a tough competition.  One has to have an extremely good product and a practical business plan as the competition is getting tougher every passing second.

CodeWeek: What is your opinion on game development in Pakistan 5 years from now? In your perspective How much of a role will Apple play in transforming the industry?

Shoaib: I see a lot of companies possibly taking the game development industry quiet seriously and moving towards developing games for the other platforms than just the mobiles. It would be a great achievement for us if we were able to develop current next generation games for the Xbox 360, PS3 or Wii.

Again, if we talk about Apple, they have already played a big role in this respect; many software houses have started working on creating mobile apps and video games as well.

CodeWeek: If I ask you to recap the gaming industry in Pakistan from 2009-2010, then which are the companies that have evolved over time and how far have they succeeded?

Shoaib: Well, Mindstorm has certainly moved along in that positive direction. As I mentioned earlier, we were more of a PC focused game development studio but later transformed and moved towards developing multiplatform applications and games.

Then there is CambridgeDocs, Tintash, Gen ITeam, TkXel and Vahzay. I am sure there are other companies as well who are trying to push into this area and coming year will bring a lot of other developers on top as well.

CodeWeek: Why should the young and upcoming developers expect a viable career in today’s gaming industry?

Shoaib: The rise in the current industry is one reason. If you notice the trends and video games development has been going up for last ten years. Initially, it was about PCs and then consoles, and now it’s about social media and mobile gaming.

Video game development is quiet difficult and challenging but creating your products and seeing your vision come to life is very satisfying at the same time. We definitely need more talented minds for this industry to be set up properly in Pakistan.

CodeWeek: Any message for Gaming enthusiast of Pakistan?

Shoaib: Game development is a lot about enthusiasm. It’s fun, entertaining and challenging at the same time. So play games when you have time, study them. And pay attention to the detail.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Anjum November 24, 2010 at 4:35 AM

Nice article to read..
Thanks for sharing

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