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Zynga targets Indian mobile market, a fresh start for Glu, and big changes at Rovio

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Zynga targets Indian mobile market, a fresh start for Glu, and big changes at Rovio
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Interactive fiction games have been around for years now - but it was in 2017 and continuing to 2018 that they’ve really turned themselves into top grossers..

We took a look at just how well they are doing and the results, for the most part, show a positive trend upwards for all developers in the space. It’s now wonder Nexon and Ubisoft have acquired studios specialising in the genre.

Our other big story last week was contributing editor Jon Jordan’s interview with Gameloft CFO Alexandre de Rochefort about the slow, but apparently significant, changes going on at one of the world’s biggest mobile games companies.

India, post-celebrity, studio closure

Elsewhere, Zynga revealed that it would be diving into the Indian market with the full launch of new title Rangoli Rekha: Color Match, a game has been designed and culturised for Indian players.

Our other most read articles were our analysis of Glu Mobile’s post-celebrity era, and the news of Rovio London’s closure and head of games Wilhelm Taht’s departure.

#5: Changes at Angry Birds developer as Rovio London closes and head of games Wilhelm Taht departs

Changes at Angry Birds developer as Rovio London closes and head of games Wilhelm Taht departs

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Changes at Angry Birds developer as Rovio London closes and head of games Wilhelm Taht departs »

Despite being open for only a year Angry Birds Developer Rovio has shut down its new London studio.

The UK branch was originally revealed during Pocket Gamer Connects London 2017 and was headed up by Mark Sorrell but closed down after a recent profit warning.

Included in the wider changes at the company is the resignation of Rovio’s head of games Wilhelm Taht, who has left his position with immediate effect due to “personal reasons".

He had been with the company for over three years and spearheaded its pivot to free-to-play.

#4: A fresh start for Glu Mobile

A fresh start for Glu Mobile

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A fresh start for Glu Mobile »

Despite a wealth of familiar faces attached to their various mobile games, from Kim Kardashian to Britney Spears, San Francisco-based developer Glu hasn't celebrated a profitable quarter since 2015 or a profitable year since 2014.

However, thanks mainly to the success of last years’ Design Home Glu can is potentially on track for a fresh start and a profitable quarter in 2018.

Our contributing editor and data maverick Jon Jordon took a look at the numbers and ran the rule on just how likely Glu’s fresh start will be.

With older titles declining in popularity it will be up to the strong performance of Design Home and a solid showing from newer titles such as WWE: Universe and new Dash game Dash Town.

#3: Zynga targets burgeoning Indian mobile games market with Rangoli Rekha: Color Match release

Zynga targets burgeoning Indian mobile games market with Rangoli Rekha: Color Match release

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Zynga targets burgeoning Indian mobile games market with Rangoli Rekha: Color Match release »

Zynga has launched a brand new game in hopes of getting in on India’s rapidly growing mobile games market.

The title, called Rangoli Rekha: Color Match, was specifically designed with Indian gamers in mind and is a part of a long-term strategy for Zynga to increase its presence in emerging markets.

According to CII-TechSci Research, the Indian mobile games sector is expected to reach 628 million users by 2020. So it’s probably not a bad idea.

“As one of the leading mobile game studios in India, our team is proud to be testing a fun and authentic mobile game tailor-made for mobile gamers in India today,” said Zynga GM Deepthi Menon in a statement to PocketGamer.biz.

#2: The slow, casual transformation of Gameloft

The slow, casual transformation of Gameloft

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The slow, casual transformation of Gameloft »

While veteran French mobile games developer Gameloft has been growing In terms of revenues and growth over the past few years, it may not be at the rate they would have hoped.

Revenues in 2017 were €258 million which compared to €257 million in 2016 and €256 million in 2015 is indeed growth. Technically.

But with Vivendi purchasing the company for €700 million back in mid-2016 they may have hoped for a better return.

Our Contributing Editor Jon Jordon managed to catch up with Gameloft’s long-term CFO Alexandre de Rochefort to chat about the company’s slow and casual transformation to adapt to the current state of the market after the technological disruption of the App Store-era.

#1: The interactive narrative games taking over the App Store

The interactive narrative games taking over the App Store

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The interactive narrative games taking over the App Store »

Interactive narrative games, as the headline suggests, are taking over the app stores.

Games like Pocket Gems' Episode and Pixelberry's Choices have been tearing it up for a while now, but they aren't where the story ends.

We took a look at just how successful these titles have been, and continue to be, and also analysed the rest of the pack which includes My Story: Choose Your Own Path, Lovestruck Choose Your Romance, Chapters: Interactive Stories and What’s Your Story.

With successes like these it's no wonder big publishers like Nexon and Ubisoft are making acquisitions to get in on the space.