Veteran game developers Mike Nelson (Falcon 3.0
) and Larry Holland (X-Wing
) began development house Timelapse Mobile in early 2005 and are now close to releasing their first title, Bodacious 80’s Challenge
. In this interview, Games On Deck talks to Mike Nelson
about their switch to mobile, problems with offshoring, and their new title.
But how did these two veteran PC game disigners get involved with the mobile space to begin with? In this excerpt, Nelson explains why the shift was “much more of a mass market opportunity”:
“I'd been looking at the mobile space since several years ago, and every time I talked to anyone in that area, people would always say, "The mass market is several years away." So I kind of talked myself out of it, but then I took a hard look at it myself, and when I really looked at the hard numbers, well. When I was in the video games business you always judged things by installed user base - when I was president of Microprose, we primarily made PC games but we did port to Mac. I killed that, because the installed base of Mac machines out there was just far too small. And videogames, well, you're talking in terms of the PS2 having 35 million machines out there installed at its peak.
Mobile phones, however, there are a billion and a half, to two billion out there, and even when you only think about the ones out there which are really capable of doing games, it's still 600-700 million. It boggles your mind when you look at it that way. And if you really want to take advantage of that, you're going to have to offer a mass market product.
So really it was the enormity of the potential market we could reach. And then, it takes us back to when Larry and I really started, particularly Larry, he was a programmer working on Commodore 64 stuff! And if you look at the level of most handset today, it's really similar. It takes us back to basic gameplay. You've got to have an addictive product that people can understand and get into quickly, and that's where gaming started off.”
You can now read the complete interview
, which includes more from Nelson on working within the mobile games space, as well as Timelapse Mobile's mission to “provide superior gameplay and superior value” (no registration required, please feel free to link to this column from external websites).