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Sports developer Nifty Games recruits EA, Warner Bros. and Zynga veterans

A roster of new hires join the LA and Bay Area-based company

Sports developer Nifty Games recruits EA, Warner Bros. and Zynga veterans

Venture funded games developer and publisher Nifty Games has unveiled a host of new employees that have joined the firm.

In fact, seven new staff members have been brought into the company as of January with the former head of QA for Warner Bros. Games, Age of Learning, and Rockyou, Johnson Lee, being appointed director of studio operations. With 18 plus years' experience, Lee has worked on titles such as The Sims, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite and SimCity 4.

Games art veteran Arthur Klein has been hired as the studios' new art director after leading internal and external art teams during his 15 years in the industry. His portfolio consists of work at Facebook VR, Electronic Arts, Page 44 Studios, Zynga and Pocket Gems.

Former Wanako Games, Atakama Labs, and Giant Monkey Studios co-founder Tiburcio De La Carcova has also made the move to Nifty as its new chief technology officer, bringing with him more than 20 years of experience.

Former Zynga director

Alongside this, former Zynga studio director and general manager Tom Shoenhair has been appointed vice-president of product. Before this, he acted as the senior vice-president and COO at Page 44 Studios as well as an executive producer for Crystal Dynamics.

Starting in QA in 2003 with EA Sports, Ibrahim Rageh has now been recruited as the firm's new technical director. Previous to this he also made his way up to engineering leadership roles across Zynga, Warner Bros. Games and Page 44 Studios.

Ryan Winterholler has also been named as general manager for the studio. His work can be found across mobile games such as NBA Jam and Frozen Free Fall.

Finally, former NBCUniversal senior producer David Price will transition to Nifty Games as its new senior producer. Prior to his time at NBCUniversal, Price was a consulting producer at Universal Pictures and an associate producer at THQ.

"All-star team"

"Since inception, Pete and I set out with the intention to build an all-star team of the most talented game creators in the business," said Nifty Games CEO Jon Middleton.

"As we enter 2020, we’re excited by our results to date, and we're confident Nifty Games can deliver the most fun, free to play sports games designed for mobile."

Last year we spoke to Middleton about industry opportunities and trends ahead of his appearance at Pocket Gamer Connects London 2019.

Pocket Gamer Connects London 2020 is due to take place on January 20th and 21st 2020 - get your tickets here! You can also see the full list of speakers right here.

Deputy Editor

Matthew Forde is the deputy editor at and also a member of the Pocket Gamer Podcast. You can find him on Twitter @MattForde64 talking about stats, data and everything pop culture related - particularly superheroes.