Interview

FGOL's Ian Harper on how the Future Games Network will propel indie games to success

FGOL's Ian Harper on how the Future Games Network will propel indie games to success
The app business is all about distribution these days.

That's why networks such as Tapjoy, Flurry, Applifier, Free App A Day etc are so popular. They offer developers who don't have their own portfolio of games to cross promote through the immediate and massive reach essential to gaining chart visibility.

Putting an indie twist on the model, UK developer Future Games of London is about to launch its Future Games Network (FGN).

Guns for hire

Leveraging an install base of over 18 million downloads and one million daily active users on iOS and Android, it's looking to work with indie developers who want to promote to that audience.

The network will launch this week with Say What?!, a free social music-based game from mobile start up 8linQ.

"We can provide a critical mass of downloads very quickly," explains FGOL's MD Ian Harper. "We'd expect to get a million downloads of Say What?! in a week."

Indeed, on the back of the Discovery Channel's Shark Week, FGOL demonstrated how quickly such volumes can be reached, adding another million installs to the network after setting its game Hungry Shark - Part 3 free on iOS.

Love this, love that

FGN's mechanism of discovery is using banners within ad-supported games and a pop-up notification when someone starts to play a FGOL title.

And Harper is keen to point out it won't be spamming.

"This isn't in-your-face Facebook marketing. It won't be annoying people," he says. "These are games we expect our players will want to play."

He thinks the market is particularly open at the moment, with large audiences looking for content and lots of start up developers, such as 8linQ, coming to market.

"There's a lot of new talent in the UK as some of the big console studios have shut down," he explains. "We're talking to several start ups about how we can help them."

Big ambitions

Acting as what Harper labels "agents, not publishers", FGOL will take a revenue share on the games it promotes. But it will be a win-win situation he says.

"We're looking for games that will do hundreds of thousands of paid downloads or millions of free downloads," he says.

Indeed, the company is very open about what it expects the impact of the network to be.

"If we have increased your sales by 40 percent or more through our promotion then you're better off. If we don't think we can do that we won't make you an offer," it explains on the FGN website.

You can find out more about Future Games Network here.
Contributing Editor

A Pocket Gamer co-founder, Jon is Contributing Editor at PG.biz which means he acts like a slightly confused uncle who's forgotten where he's left his glasses. As well as letters and cameras, he likes imaginary numbers and legumes.

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