Relatively new to the scene, Dash Studios from Nigeria has wasted no time in releasing their first commercial product – Nouns. Founded in March 2022, the studio was launched to focus on creating games with commercial value. We believe the African idea can be world class, and we’re working to attain that. With half a dozen games in development and more on the way, they want to create a gaming giant in Africa.

GIA reached out to Dash Studios co-founder John Ikpeme to have him break down their approach to their first commercial launch.

GIA: What was the strategy behind the launch roll out?

As a debut product from a first time developer, we weren’t naive about the difficulty of the market. We decided to focus on building our fanbase months prior to launch. At alpha, nouns hunt was tested by over 1000+ people, with a section of that being excited for release. We kept growing our community on discord, and other social media channels, which helped us build the game according to user feedback. With collaborations from communities like Gamr, Africacomicade and Xbox, we grew hype for Nouns Hunt. At Open Beta launch, which was March 31st, we decided to use two weeks to gather initial feedback from users, fixing minor changes before going on a full blown marketing campaign, next week. We also decided to tease features rather than push it all at once, to improve game’s performance in the market. With features lined up till September 2023, when the game leaves open Beta, we intend to gather traction to facilitate our pre-seed raise which starts next week.

GIA: Did the performance meet or exceed your team’s expectations? If so, what were your initial expectations and if not in what areas were they exceeded?

Nouns Hunt performed far better than we expected, with Nouns Hunt ranked top 12 word games on the App Store just after 9 hours, bringing in tons of positive reviews. We predicted that due to organic growth, we’d take a while to hit 100 users, but Nouns Hunt got over 300 registered users in one week, in over 15 countries, and counting, despite not running ads

GIA: Where do you see Nouns going from here?

Might sound like bias, because it’s our product, but I truly believe Nouns Hunt is going to the very top. The word game market has been pretty stale for a while, with top products still in the market developed other a decade ago. Nouns Hunt offers a word game multiplayer experience unlike no other product currently in the app market. And with our focus, which is building games capable of competing on the global market, we see Nouns Hunt as an ‘African Game’, but a world class title.

GIA: Any advice for anyone wishing to follow your blueprint?

I’d say despite being a game developer, you need to set up a game studio, just like any business. Without the right team, covering all aspects of the business it will not work. Also don’t build games that pander to just a small section of the market, but rather build games that can be played by everyone. Games typically do not have a long peak or life cycle, so what you need to do is make that peak last as long as possible. 

The game is available to download from the Android store now.