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Five years of My.Games: From new releases to finding success in the Asian market

We caught up with Elena Grigorian who reflects My.Games’ first half of the year and shares on upcoming plans after celebrating the company's five year anniversary
Five years of My.Games: From new releases to finding success in the Asian market
  • “We celebrated War Robots' 10th anniversary and its outstanding achievements including consistent year-over-year growth with over 270 million registered players and $900 million in lifetime revenue.”
  • “Despite the current popularity of rogue-like games our rogue-like PvE shooter for the mobile market is quite unique.”

Publisher and developer My.Games recently celebrated its fifth anniversary. Celebrations featured across its titles, with special gifts granted to players. 

To mark the five-year milestone, we spoke with My.Games CEO Elena Grigorian who reflects on the studio's journey so far, from bringing War Robots back to China to releasing its latest game Zombie State, and exploring new ventures in the future.


PocketGamer.biz: Firstly, how has the first half of the year been for My.Games? What has the team been working on?

Elena Grigorian: At My.Games, we continue to develop our flagship projects, focusing on regional growth and experimenting with new mechanics and monetisation strategies. For instance, our Asian campaigns, such as the War Robots relaunch in China and the Rush Royale campaign in Korea, have been major highlights.

We secured an ISBN and relaunched War Robots in China. Having successfully operated War Robots in Western markets for many years, entering China was a logical move. The results have been impressive, placing us among the top five most successful shooter products in the region, just behind major players like Tencent. 

“While the market for PvE shooters with free movement is well-represented on PC and consoles, it is not as prevalent on mobile.”
Elena Grigorian

A significant focus has also been on expanding existing projects and launching new products, which always involves some experimentation.

We launched a new mobile title, Zombie State, which combines rogue-like and first-person shooter genres for the F2P mobile market. We have been working in and observing the PvP genre of mobile shooters for a long time. This market is highly competitive, making it challenging to survive. However, while the market for PvE shooters with free movement is well-represented on PC and consoles, it is not as prevalent on mobile. So, we decided to explore that direction.

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We realised that we could enter this space only with strong expertise, and our experience with Left to Survive gave us the confidence that we could handle this challenging genre.

Through Left to Survive, we learned how to excel in various aspects: creating engaging gameplay, managing balance, optimisation, and meta elements. This expertise made us confident that we could achieve similar success with Zombie State, which is why we decided to develop this game.

Zombie State has quite a unique blend of genres. Rogue-likes are particularly popular right now. Can you tell us about some of the game's design choices?

We initially aimed for Zombie State to be a rogue-like game. The challenge was to understand how deeply mobile players are willing to immerse themselves in a genre with longer sessions and which genre attributes - typically established on PC and consoles - would be most in demand.

After numerous iterations, we achieved excellent rogue-like gameplay: the action is intense, bosses are relentless, locations and action scenarios are dynamically generated, and players assemble their preferred weapon and ability builds in each run, experimenting with different tactics.

We gradually ensured that each gaming session delivered a new gameplay experience for players. This task is quite complex for a PvE shooter, and I believe we handled it excellently.

We are especially pleased to see that our genre vision aligns with player expectations. Despite the current popularity of rogue-like games, our rogue-like PvE shooter for the mobile market is quite unique. It presents a significant opportunity for us to reach a new audience and provides ample room for experimentation in developing this genre for mobile platforms.

How long has Zombie State been in development, and how has the launch been so far?

The idea for Zombie State emerged in the summer of 2022 as a result of an internal game jam by the team, during which they aimed to create something fundamentally new in the shooter genre using their existing expertise and assets.

Since then, the game has undergone a complex journey towards global release. The team iterated extensively on gameplay and experimented with various meta elements, balance, and economy. The project spent 2023 in successive beta tests, gradually expanding the team and feature set. By the time of the global release, Zombie State had an excellent feature set that addressed all the main player needs. In addition to the main progression, the game features entertaining modes, end-game content, and event activities. 

We understand the importance of narrative in zombie-themed games, so we paid special attention to the characters, the world, and story progression.

Zombie State delivers FPS action with a rogue-like twist
Zombie State delivers FPS action with a rogue-like twist

It is now clear that players have appreciated these efforts – the game's store ratings are quite high, with over 1 million installs already, and players specifically highlight the engaging gameplay and quality of graphics. We are very pleased with the level of product quality at launch, and we have huge plans for the game's development, so we definitely have surprises and delights in store for our players in the future.

“We celebrated War Robots' 10th anniversary and its outstanding achievements, including consistent year-over-year growth.”
Elena Grigorian

You also mentioned War Robots earlier and the success you're seeing after the game has returned to China. How do you feel this success was made possible?

In April, we celebrated War Robots' 10th anniversary and its outstanding achievements, including consistent year-over-year growth with over 270 million registered players and $900 million in lifetime revenue.

The game's success can be attributed to several key factors. First, I’d like to mention the dedicated team - hundreds of passionate people are constantly working on the game’s development and growth. Second, the team's ability to unlock new potential and expand into new markets, such as China, even after many years has been essential.

The game evolves continuously, and gameplay improvements don’t stop for a single minute. Developers constantly introduce new content and features that compliment the current gameplay mechanics and align with the meta, remaining responsive to technological advancements.

Lastly, building a strong connection with the community by actively seeking and incorporating player feedback has also significantly contributed to our success.

My.Games War Robots franchise remains its biggest money spinner
My.Games War Robots franchise remains its biggest money spinner

In addition to a new game and the success of War Robots, My.Games has been celebrating its 5th anniversary. How do you reflect on the journey so far?

We are immensely proud to have built such a large player base over the years. With a diverse portfolio, we are confident that everyone can find their favourite game among our offerings. We celebrated this milestone with our players by organising special activities within our products because it is their celebration as much as ours.

Of course, we also celebrate our anniversary with our employees, honouring our achievements as a team across all our hubs, including our biggest offices in the Netherlands and Cyprus. I want to wish our team a great and successful year ahead as we continue to create exciting gaming experiences for players from all over the world!

“The market dynamics are driving gaming companies to be more creative, encouraging us to experiment and develop fresh solutions.”
Elena Grigorian

The team has a lot to celebrate, but the wider industry has been facing many challenges. What is your plan to stay ahead of these challenges, and what are your thoughts on the current state of the mobile market?

The current landscape in the gaming industry presents significant challenges and at My.Games, we are taking a focused approach to navigate them. We closely analyse our games' performance to identify titles that are underrepresented in the market and focus our teams' efforts on optimising and expanding these games.

The market dynamics are driving gaming companies to be more creative, encouraging us to experiment and develop fresh solutions. For example, a notable trend involves expanding into new markets like APAC and embracing local expertise for tailored publishing strategies.

This expansion requires adapting to local cultures and business practices, including collaboration with alternative stores and payment platforms. 

Despite the challenges, we are optimistic about the industry's future outlook. The growth in investment activity inspires hope for the recovery.

This resurgence in investment deals signals positive trends recognised by forward-looking investors, indicating a potential rebound for the gaming industry in the near future. At My.Games, we remain alert, closely monitoring market developments to align with our strategic goals. 

“We are exploring opportunities in the buy-to-play sector for PCs and consoles, which represents a new and exciting direction for us.”
Elena Grigorian

And finally, are there any future plans from My.Games we should know about?

Looking ahead, My.Games has several exciting plans on the horizon. Our primary focus is on concentrating our efforts on key projects and studios, particularly in the areas crucial to our business - namely, mobile development and publishing midcore projects, as well as publishing buy-to-play titles for PC and consoles.

We have significant plans to further develop our presence in the Asian market for mobile and PC projects. Our recent success with War Robots in China has been encouraging, and we’re thrilled with how Zombie State has performed in the Asian region. This positive reception motivates us to continue expanding and enhancing these products in the Asian region.

Additionally, we are exploring opportunities in the buy-to-play sector for PCs and consoles, which represents a new and exciting direction for us.