He is currently working on the licensing space and expanding his portfolio of game titles in studios such as Flying Wild Hog and its consumer products. License Global Speak exclusively Simon Bull, Head, Product Marketing, Third Party Publishing, Jagex – Developer of the iconic game title “RuneScape” – For more information,
LG: How has “RuneScape” built your brand portfolio over the last 20 years?
SB: “RuneScape” led the game distribution and consumption innovation when the first incarnation emerged as an online game in 2001. It was the creation of three entrepreneurial game developers specializing in the emerging markets of games played in Internet browsers – this was the key to its first popularity and enduring success.
The fact that “RuneScape” can be played on a PC or Mac web browser made it very accessible. There was no need to buy boxes from retailers, no discs, no software to install. All you have to do is open your browser and go online anytime, anywhere.
Launched at an interesting time, RuneScape reached a sweet spot between making the Internet accessible to everyone and the emerging market for Internet games. Being browser-based was popular with the school because people could play it during lunch breaks, play it when they got home, or play it in the library, and word of mouth spread.
“RuneScape” was also clicked early because of its social dimensions, primarily through its chat feature. Although “RuneScape’s” is older than social media, its chat feature provides a social gaming experience that allows players to talk to friends wherever they are. They happen to kill skeletons and at the same time hunt beasts. RuneScape has never lost its social edge and has become one of the first games to explode on video sharing and streaming sites.
“RuneScape” also provided another way for players to pay for game content. Some games are free to play. For those who want to take the adventure even further and enjoy the expanded world, you can purchase a monthly subscription-based membership package. This continues today.
Especially in the game market, you cannot stay still for 20 years. We constantly innovate and create an ever-evolving world. Additional content is constantly being added to give players new challenges, characters and quests.
With over 280 million player accounts created in digital lifetime, the RuneScape brand is thriving and thriving as technology evolves, embracing its heritage and adapting and enhancing the player experience. It is no longer playable in internet browsers, but it is available worldwide for download from game clients that are free to download. Keeping the social side by connecting with players on video and streaming sites in and out of the game, we run our own festival, RuneFest.
LG: What are the core products released under the RuneScape brand? What are you planning to produce in the future?
SB: Two games are at the core of the RuneScape brand. “RuneScape” itself, which constantly evolves with new contents, functions, and adventures, and “Old School RuneScape” The 2007 version of the game – With retro-style visuals and gameplay, it remains true to the origins of online role-player games.
From the core group of PC and Mac players, the brand has diversified to mobile and tablets in recent years, with both “Old School Rune Scape” and “Rune Scape” now available for iOS and Android devices, desktop and mobile games.
Continuing from the recent record level of players, as we continue to expand game availability on more devices and distribution platforms, we will continue to invest in our brands and bring the world of RuneScape to more players. We also create new games that bring the RuneScape franchise to new game genres and audiences.
There are related products as well as games. From bespoke merchandise lines to music lines, it includes an iconic music album of games played by the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
LG: This is an incredibly successful franchise. What is the key to creating a longstanding game icon?
SB: The “RuneScape” franchise will celebrate its 20th anniversary in January 2021. Players will be able to immerse themselves in the fictional world of Gielinor in two games: Rune Scape and Old School Rune Scape. What they have in common is that these are two of the world’s most community-centric, massively multiplayer online role-playing games. We call them living games. It’s a deep, meaningful, and evolving, immersive experience that goes beyond what you would expect from a live gaming service.
Living games are built on the evergreen design model, which provides players with continuous content and long-term engagement. They have a vibrant, evolving world with a community focus, empowering players both online and offline with emotional engagement and voice shaping the evolution of the game.
Our “RuneScape” game also provides a safe, friendly, fun and carefree place for players around the world to enjoy. Players often come to RuneScape because of their dedication to the community. They may go crazy for another while away, but when they return, they find new and exciting things to make friends with. Living games prioritize the player’s experience, which provides long-term commercial opportunities for investment return to the game for the next evolution. And that is what makes the icon.
SB: Jagex hasn’t worked with other partners for a long time. What are you trying to achieve with Flying Wild Hog right now?
I’ve seen hundreds of games over the last two years and it took me some time to find the right kind of studio with the right kind of games. When we embarked on incorporating Jagex into the home of a live game portfolio-an experience like the RuneScape franchise with the quality that has grown it for 20 years-we have great potential I was sure I could find the game.
At Flying Wild Hog, we’ve found a long-term partner who fully understands the importance of evolving evergreen designs, meaningful social interactions, player empowerment, and long-term commercial opportunities. The studio is a dynamic and exciting team,
250 people in Poland. An unusual combination of passion, vision, concentration and skill. We are excited about the prospect of working as a team and building lasting partnerships.
We look forward to launching an exciting science fiction action-role-playing game that is free to play, amazingly fun, and has a loyal fan base for many years.
LG: How will this bring a new boost to the consumer product space with new titles, new partnerships, and increased talent in the Polish game development scene?
SB: When we launched Jagex Partners, we said from the beginning we wanted quality over quantity. The life and success of “RuneScape” is known around the world. This is an IP that will continue to invest in delivering more content to existing games, as well as new games on platforms such as: Mobile and console. Leveraging these skills and expertise to deliver new living games from other developers to players around the world is key to our long-term strategy.
Some of the existing players want to play this new game, but it’s not surprising given that it’s a very different kind of game from’RuneScape’ and creates new opportunities to reach players. Absent. It has all the major components of a live game, but it is on multiple platforms and it will also broaden the audience.
And yes, Flying Wild Hog is the first of its published publishing contracts, and of course we want more partnerships, while ensuring quality is more reliable than quantity.
We met a lot of developers and studios. And I hope this deal attracts more than they want to talk to us, wherever they are in the world-and we’ve seen games from all continents. Poland, and generally Eastern Europe, are fertile regions for game development and we were very impressed with what we saw there. When it comes to partnerships, we don’t bias or focus on geography, but we’re happy to partner with developers wherever they’re like at Flying Wild Hog.
LG: Europe is currently a very exciting place for game development. How is it different from global games and what are the opportunities in modern games?
SB: Everywhere in the world is an exciting place for game development. By its very nature, it’s a great industry to be part of the creative talent drawn from the entire technical and creative spectrum. The difference in who the game is being developed for is often far more important than the studio location. For example, the types of games developed for the Chinese market are significantly different than the games developed for the Western market. This is due to local preferences, expectations, economics, hardware penetration, platform preferences, etc.
Western Europe and North America are very mature markets for PC and console games, but they offer countless local favorite genres. For example, PC strategy games have been successful in Germany, and PlayStation platformers are better in France. And when it comes to mobile, the opportunities are vast, but the markets have vastly different tastes for action, sports, and puzzles.
The biggest opportunity is in living games. Invest in IP for 10+ years, not just the next 6 months or 1 year. Over the last 10-15 years, we’ve seen significant changes in game sales.
Subscriptions and microtransactions than disks in boxes on shelves. Live game services can provide a great deal of value to players and foster a kind of community that is loyal, enthusiastic and happy. That is all. Player first.
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