Juice Cubes is made by Pocket PlayLab, a developer of mobile social games headquartered in Hong Kong, with most of the production done in Bangkok, Thailand. It’s a fruity puzzle game with rows of cubes that users can connect to create massive combos and explosions, beat challenges, and compete with their friends – a lot like Candy Crush.
Rovio Stars is the Finnish firm’s publishing initiative. It introduces a developer’s game to a mass audience while supporting it with marketing and PR. The first two Rovio Stars games, Icebreaker: A Viking Voyage and Tiny Thief, were released this summer.
Juice Cubes is the first free game (with in-app purchases) under the Rovio Star brand as the other two games the companies pushed out before were both paid titles. The new game is now available on iOS and Android with a Facebook version to follow soon. Kalle Kaivola, the senior VP of product and publishing at Rovio, explained the reason behind the game partnership:
When we first saw Juice Cubes, it was clear it had the hallmarks of a great Rovio Stars game: it combines smooth and engaging gameplay, great characters and a fun atmosphere, which makes it a perfect game for people of all ages. We were happy to sign up Juice Cubes under Rovio Stars and help bring it to fans all around the world.
Jakob Lykkegaard, co-founder of Pocket Playlab also added:
After rejecting several big publishers and determined to do it ourselves, Rovio came knocking on the door and we very quickly found a perfect match in terms of our combined teams and fans.
Jacob explained to Tech in Asia that Juice Cubes has been soft-launched in Thailand, Australia, New Zealand, and Malaysia for a few months. It’s recieved good feedback so far. In fact, the company got half a million users in Thailand during the testing period.
How does the partnership work?
Jacob says the partnership is purely related to publishing. Rovio Stars will push Juice Cubes to all of its Angry Birds gamers. This rolls out in the next few weeks. He explained:
They can do it faster than us trying to do it so we decided to partner with them. Pocket PlayLab still owns the game, the trademark and IP. They only help us publishing it. This is the biggest launch of a mobile game in Southeast Asia.
Stay in the game
Pocket PlayLab aims to add new scenes to the game every two weeks, emulating Rovio’s approach to keeping a game fresh with frequent updates. Now the game already has 175 chapters. The company’s goal is to develop as many as 400 scenes. It’s potentially more content and challenges than most people have time to play.
Pocket PlayLab expects to see the number of Juice Cubes users reach 20 million by Christmas.
(Editing by Steven Millward)
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