A new beta build of Finnish developed video game platform, Playfield, was recently launched. The site focuses on being a place with social interaction and discovering games through your socializing.
“We connect to the social platforms that gamers are using every day, like Twitter and YouTube, and pull in the assets, content, and conversations that are happening around each individual title”, says developer, Shark Punch, in a press release.
But as the current Playfield platform is only a beta build, there is still new content and functionality to come, Jiri Kupiainen from Shark Punch elaborates.
“We’re currently focusing on the social and community side, so things like doing recommendations and discounts based on your social connections, more ways for gamers, developers and streamers to interact with each other, and more / better integrations with services like Twitch. Basically all the cool stuff that we can do because we’re not built like a monolithic silo, like most of the competition”, says Jiri.
Apart from Playfield, Shark Punch is the developer behind the tactical action puzzle game, The Masterplan, and Jiri says the team’s experience comes in handy when creating something like Playfield.
“We’ve always thought of games more as a service than just a product you ship and forget about, so in that sense it’s not that different to build this platform than creating games.”
“Of course the design and technology challenges are very different, but the team has a lot of experience from building all kinds of different platforms and products. And I think our background as an indie game developer shows in Playfield – we’re building this to scratch our own itch, both as game developers and as people who love indie games”, says Jiri.
In fact, the Finish developer claims the technological obstacles have not been the hardest to overcome. The challenge is to get people to understand what they are trying to do with Playfield.
“From a technology point of view, it’s been relatively smooth sailing. I think our biggest challenges have been around communicating what we’re trying to do – people easily just think of us as a “Steam competitor”, where we ourselves see it more as something like “Netflix meets Reddit, for games”. Our development approach also affects this – we really enjoy doing things the “early access” way, but naturally it makes it harder for people to understand the difference between what’s there now versus where we’re heading”.
Lastly, Shark Punch tries to not focus mainly on squeezing money out of their platform, and believes the service is different enough to be able to survive in the market.
“I think this philosophy of building connections with services and networks people already use, and the focus on the more human side of gaming instead of just products and money, are what make us different. Gaming culture has changed a lot with things like streaming, esports and “triple-I” indie games, and we’re right in the middle of that. We also have an experienced team and great investors, so I’d say our chances of doing something awesome with this are good”, says Kupiainen confidently.
Denmark’s largest games industry conference for Nordic game developers returns on December 7th to discuss the future of business in the games industry. The lineup of speakers includes as Ex-King Tommy Palm, Christine Thaarup, Steffen of Betadwarf, and many many more!
Tickets are limited and can be booked here.