MAG Interactive's Chris Peters on the importance of live ops

How evolution can become revolution

MAG Interactive's Chris Peters on the importance of live ops

Chris Peters has been working in the games industry for two and a half years. His background is in testing and customer support for mobile applications.

Having spent the last 15 years testing and being responsible for application quality as a consultant, he decided to move into gaming to widen this and have exposure to games that have a far higher player base and more challenging issues to overcome.

He's currently employed to drive MAG Interactive’s live ops titles, like WordBrain and Wordalot.

We caught up with Peters to talk about liveops, the potential of subscription services and agile methodology. Could you tell us a bit about MAG Interactive?

Chris Peters: MAG Interactive is a mobile gaming studio with a focus on casual multiplayer games for smartphones.

At MAG, our aim is to create engaging experiences for a wide global audience. We are best known for our word games, like Ruzzle and WordBrain.

What does your role entail?

I am responsible for making updates to liveops titles and using customer feedback, along with adding new features to keep our players engaged through the games.

I have direct communication with some players and am jointly responsible for customer support.

Why did you want to work in the games industry?

Working as a consultant for many years gave me a broad insight in what I enjoyed doing the most, and that was working with games. As my background was working with mobile applications, putting the two together seemed like a great fit.

During the last two and a half years since joining MAG I have found new challenges that are both intriguing and difficult to solve. Working on MAG games is very rewarding due to the vast number of users that play and being a part of LiveOps allows me to be involved in making changes our players are asking for.

We often get feedback from players that have recognised that we made changes based on their feedback - this is rewarding and encourages me to keep improving the games.

What advice would you give to anyone looking to get into it?

Take every opportunity to increase your knowledge and apply to companies that fit the types of games you are interested in. This helps with being able to present yourself in an interview quite quickly.

What are your thoughts on the industry in the last 12 months?

I have seen a move towards putting subscriptions into mobile games, Google and Apple have expanded their subscription based mobile gaming services. This follows other entertainment platforms that have already had these services available for a while.

From a liveops perspective this is great news for players as they can be a part of a game that develops for them.

I have noticed changes in the process for making games. Companies are adopting an agile methodology, used in software development, to make decisions quickly on where to progress whilst always keeping your players happy.

What major trends do you predict in the next 12 months?

What we find at MAG is that social multiplayer games create stronger engagement from players. Events and social connections are already very important to free to play games, and I only see those features becoming more extensive and important.

How has the games industry changed since you first started?

I think the games industry is always evolving. The biggest challenge is standing out from so many other games. I think competition is healthy though - that's what keeps ideas evolving and ultimately gives players new and fresh experiences.

Which part of the Connects event are you most looking forward to and why?

Global Publishing - I want to find out about expanding into territories that we don’t already support with our games.

Brightest Britain - It will be interesting to get a feel for what is happening in Britain beyond what I am aware of.

Live Ops Landscape - I want to see what some of my peers are doing in LiveOps.

At Pocket Gamer Connects London 2020, Chris Peters will be part of a panel called "Keeping your community happy".

For more information, and to book your tickets for the event, click here.