With the release of their latest title, Battlegrounds: War, Tanks and Nukes, Nigerian Smart Olive Games has released their second game of the year and most notably their fourth PC title since the studios inception in 2016. With the narrative around games from Nigeria centred around mobile development, GIA reached out to the studios CEO, Ifeanyi Chigbata to learn more about the studios overall strategy.
Did this release meet your expectations in terms of sales, reception and overall quality?
The reception for Battlegrounds: War, Tanks and Nukes has been so far very impressive and has led to an increase in the fanbase for Smart Olive Games. The gameplay mechanics was the priority during the development of the game as we hoped to capture the hearts of gamers who would enjoy action games being played on a board. In terms of sales, the game is yet to reach expectations, although new players are still discovering the game every week.
Was the ambition of the studio always been to focus on PC games and if so why?
We actually began game development on the android platform and although we have been focusing on the PC platform for some years, we do have some android titles which are being slowly developed and tested. Our focus on the PC platform has been due to the easier pattern of gamers finding our games on PC release platforms. The android platform requires quite a lot of marketing and strategy to get a successful launch due to larger volume of releases and the zero race.
Are there any ambitions to explore any other platforms such as mobile and has that limited or opened up your pool of potential players?
Yes. We are looking to expand into consoles very soon and are working towards being able to release our future titles on consoles, PC and even mobile in some cases. We believe some of our titles would easily appeal to players on certain platforms than others.
What was that process of embracing that platform like, especially in a region renowned for mobile gaming?
Releasing on PC platforms has been tough. We have had to learn all we know through contact connection to game developers outside the continent. Getting a publisher abroad to publish your PC title is quite difficult. Luckily each title we release on the PC platform always does better than the previous in gameplay, sales, graphics, reviews etc because the Nigerian game development industry is 98% focused on Android platform development, we don’t really have other studios around us who we can collaborate with and share ideas or lessons learnt which would help the studios mature faster. We are always happy when fans take time to give reviews on our games.
With this being the fourth PC game released by the studio, what lessons have been learned over each PC iteration to make this the quintessential SmartOliveGames title?
The gaming trends loved by gamers change a lot. We have made games for various genres. Our games are usually made to target certain lovers of a particular genre or gaming style. In terms of building towards the perfect title, our graphics quality continues to grow with each title as well as the gameplay mechanics. Our upcoming titles like The Gods Within, Lucid dreams, Little Shepherds and Ghost house are going to be showing our fans and the gaming community our progress in that regard.
The company strives to make games for educational and non-educational purposes for gamers of different cultures around the world, with a current focus in creating action RPGs with powerful storylines