Even though its runaway success on the App Store made it seem like the logical next step, it was still rather shocking to see the extent that the Angry Birds (Free) series took over virtually every media outlet at the height of its popularity. Whether that was an animated series on television, a feature film, or even just the sheer amount of merchandise that appeared on shop shelves, it was still surprising to see what began as a relatively modest Chillingo arcade game become the all-encompassing behemoth that resulted in the whole world being infected with Angry Bird fever. Following the precedent set by Rovio’s flagship title, Supercell have detailed in an article with VentureBeat how they are planning to move ‘beyond video games’ into the animated series which we brought you news of last month, but also investments, merchandise, and eSports.
In the feature, as well as outlining the frankly ridiculous $1 billion potential sales figures for Clash Royale (Free) in its first year, the CEO and cofounder of Supercell Ilkka Paananen expressed his vision of expanding the universe of its games, as a way ‘to give back to [their] players’. Paananen cites a future figurine store as an example, as the intricately designed models will be priced mostly to cover the manufacturing and shipping costs, rather than purely to make a profit over even more potential marketplaces. Furthermore the upcoming Clash Royale North American Open, which will take place later this month, was described as an attempt to distance the competition from typical eSports events through inviting comedians from The Daily Show to present it. Despite all these cool new additions, which culminate in the recent purchase of Badland developer Frogmind for $7.8 million, as well as the ‘Clash-A-Rama’ animated series from three former writers of The Simpsons, Paananen emphasised how Supercell are a games company, and ‘will always be a games company’ first and foremost.
While there’s always going to be a degree of cynicism in regards to this rhetoric of putting the fans first – Supercell are a business, after all – it’s certainly an exciting time to be a fan of the Finnish developer’s titles, and it’s refreshing to hear that the runaway success of their games hasn’t caused Supercell to lose sight of what brought them that very success in the first place. I’d strongly recommend anyone interested in what Supercell has in store beyond gaming to give the VentureBeat article a read, and make sure to let us know your views on the Clash Royale forum thread.