10 Burning Questions with Magiko Gaming, creators of the Platformance series

To kick off Developer Appreciation today, we sat down with Magiko Gaming, the makers of the incredibly hard but satisfying Platformance series and got a bit of insight into their history with the Xbox LIVE Indie Games suite and their start on the Windows Phone platform.

1. How did you get started with Windows Phone?

When Windows Phone 7 was launched, we had already developped 2 XBLIG games: “PLATFORMANCE: Castle Pain” and “Bunker Buster”. Since our development environment is XNA, the port was quite straight forward.

2. What phone do you personally use?

LG optimus 7 E900 and Omnia 7.

3. What was your biggest challenge in developing the Platformance series for Windows Phones?

The port itseelf from XBox 360 to Wp7 was easy. The biggest challenge was not to fail the submission, all the more as “PLATFORMANCE: Castle Pain” was our first release on Wp7.
We failed several times (Marketplace made our main menu screen lag a lot, no hardware Back button on a screen, …).

4. Do you have any ideas for any more games on the way that you’d care to share with us?

Our current development is “Platformines”, on PC. It is a huge exploration platformer. We have not planed to port it for the moment.

5.  Monetization: in terms of driving revenue, can you tell us about your experience, your strategy, and the overall potential? (We know this is a touchy subject and confidential issue, but we appreciate any details you’re willing to share) 

We have now 4 games on Wp7 (“PLATFORMANCE: Castle Pain“, “Bunker Buster“, “PLATFORMANCE: Temple Death” and “Cosmic Jumper“).

Even if these games have good ratings, they do not even pay back the money invested to build them. The main problem is the lack of visibility. Once you have passed the short period when your game is new, only a few dozen are downloaded each day…

A way to improve our sales would have been to have the games being labelized as “XBox Live”…

6. What do you want to see in Windows Phone 8?

A lot more devices sold…

7. Do you develop for other ecosystems and how does Windows Phone development compare to those?

We do not develop for other Smartphones.

8. If you could give one tip to fellow Windows Phone developers, what would it be?

Make it for fun, but don’t expect too much money wise.

9. Tell us one thing that most people don’t know about you.

We have already designed a big part of “PLATFORMANCE 3”.

10. (Silly Question) Favorite Olympic sport?

Race walk and women pole vaulting.

If you’re interested in checking out the Platformance series or any of the other fine games created by the folks at Magiko gaming, you can check them out in the Marketplace here.

Are you a developer or know one who might be interested in taking part in Developer Appreciation Month? We’re running month-long featurettes that highlight some of the best and brightest minds behind Windows Phone apps. Get in contact with us today to participate!


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