This Week in Games – Week 35

This article is part of the weekly “This Week in Games” article-series on Nordic Game Bits. The purpose of the series is to collect and wrap-up all the news that we did not cover with a full article on NordicGameBits form the past weeks. 

Rovio lays off 38 percent of its workforce

Another round of sad news for Finnish Rovio were announced this week, as the company announced that they have had to lay off 260 employees. This follows another downsizing in December 2014, where the studio had to lay off 110 employees.

But the refocused attention on games that this round of layoffs bring with it, also means that Rovio will have a chance at increasing their bottom line. Additionally, Angry Birds 2 is doing well on the mobile charts, and 2016 will introduce not only the Angry Birds movie, but also a series of Angry Birds Lego, which will hopefully boost the franchise’s popularity.



Norway to Focus on Exporting Digital Games

A recent announcement by the Norwegian government sees the Culture Department, the Norwegian Film Institute, and Innovation Norway collaborate on a new project that will help fund Norwegian game companies with international ambitions and growth potential. The total funding for the project reached $1.2 million, with the Department of Culture and Innovation Norway contributing with approximately $600.000 each.



Frogmind adds level-editor to Badland

Finnish Frogmind announced this week that they will be adding a level editor to their popular mobile game, Badland. The beta testing of the level editor has alreay started on iOS. Interestingly, the editor is actually a polished version of the exact same editor the team at Frogmind used to make all the original levels for Badland.



Alpha Polaris gets revived on Steam

Originally released in 2011 and only available in physical stores, Alpha Polaris: A Horror Adventure Game has due to popular demand now been released on Steam Greenlight, where the original developers, Finnish Turmoil Games, hopes that the community will appreciate a digitally-available version of the game.



Fox Acquires Movie Rights for Danish Mood Studio’s Fall of Gods

Fall of Gods was a Kickstarter crowdfunded illustrated novel by Danish Mood Studio about Norse mythology, which reached its funding goal earlier this year. This week, Twentieth Century Fox announces that they have acquired the movie rights for the story. Fox has teamed up with Wes Ball, the director of The Maze Runner, to make the epic story about Norse mythology come to life!



Frozenbyte apologizes for Trine 3 in new video

Finnish Frozenbyte released Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power recently, but the game has not been all that well received. The short version of the story is that the team simply didn’t have the financial capabilities to meet its ambitions for the game, and certain things were therefore left out, such as a proper ending to the story.

“We decided to stick with it and just see how it goes, because the sequel would heavily depend on the reception and how well the first part would do financially. So we didn’t want to make any promises that we might not be able to keep in the future,”. “Basically, we took the easy route and didn’t say anything, and instead of rewriting the story completely so it would fit, like, five levels of a shorter game, we decided to stick with the original story that would then span over to other games in the future.”, Kai Tuovinen of Frozenbyte says to pcgamer.



Playraven’s Lasse Seppänen talks about preparing for Slush

Last year at Slush, Playraven pitched their up-coming mobile game, Spymaster, to investors at Slush. Soon after, the company raised a total of €5 million in funding. And this week, Lasse Seppänen opened up about the whole experience in episode 1 of a series of videos released to promote the Finnish Game Executive Program at Aalto University in Finland.



Sune is not only a gamer and writer who wishes his keyboard-typing-speed would translate directly into Nintendo 64 controller agility, but also the co-founder and CEO of NordicGameBits.

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