Train2Game News 2021 Pocket Gamer Mobile Award Winners

MiHoYo’s Genshin Impact took home the biggest prize as it scooped Game of the Year at Steel Media’s fourth annual and industry-leading Pocket Gamer Mobile Games Awards, supported by Game Insight, held last week.

The ceremony saw the action role-playing title also awarded Best Audio/Visual Accomplishment, while Tencent and TiMi Studio Group secured Best Publisher and Best Developer, respectively.
Innovation of the Year went to Niantic for its ingenious reworking of augmented reality hit Pokémon Go for the 2020 lockdown, Pollen VC was voted Best Service Provider, and Supercell’s Clash Royale conquered the opposition to the Best Live Ops trophy.

As ever the event, which in this pandemic-affected year took place later than its traditional January slot and adopted a hybrid live/digital format hosted by London’s Ham Yard Hotel, aimed to shine a spotlight on the work of the top mobile games companies over the previous year.

Further highlights from the night included the Rising Star award, shared – an event first – by Jana and Sham Al Bdour of Sakura Games, Unity continuing its Best Game Engine dominance with a fourth win in as many years, and Jam City CEO Chris DeWolfe joining the ranks of Mobile Legend.

The coveted People’s Choice Award, nominated for and voted on by readers of Steel Media’s leading consumer site, PocketGamer.com, went to Tilting Point’s SpongeBob: Krusty Cook-Off.

“We believe the MGAs have a vital role to play in recognising the efforts and achievements of the entire ecosystem that makes mobile gaming the best industry in the world,” said Steel Media CEO, Chris James.

“This is doubly important considering the forced disconnects of the last 16 months and also the incredible role that the mobile games industry has paid not just in contributing to the economy and keeping people in jobs, but moreover in keeping billions of citizens feeling a little more connected and engaged.”

As the full winner breakdown below demonstrates, the 22 categories (including three new additions this year) represent firms spanning the whole industry, from the games developers and publishers to the tools companies, service providers, support agencies, investors and recruiters that all contribute towards this $90 billion sector being the largest and most pervasive in gaming.

After the lobbying and shortlisting phases – the biggest and most complex to date – which took place from March to May, the finalists were subsequently voted on throughout June by our panel of 100-plus mobile games experts from every corner of the industry.

Steel Media is hugely grateful to everyone who took the time to submit themselves, their colleagues, company, or contemporaries, as well as everyone who attended the ceremony itself during these tricky times – whether in person or digitally.

Additionally, we would like to thank main sponsor Game Insight, together with Admix, Huawei Ads, Jam City, Scopely and Tilting Point for coming on board as category sponsors – their support helped make the event a success in a particularly challenging year.

And last but by no means least, congratulations to all the finalists – it really was a hard-fought affair this year – and, of course, the heartiest of praise to the winners themselves.

More info on all things PG Mobile Games Awards at the official website:
www.mobilegamesawards.com

Train2game News Pocket Gamer Top 50 Finalists

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The complete Pocket Gamer Top 50 finalists have now been announced and the list is available to view on the PocketGamer.biz website.

Developers including: Rovio Entertainment, Space Ape Games, Next Games and Wargaming have used the opportunity to discuss why the accolades are so important and to thank Pocket Gamer.biz for the recognition.

PocketGamer.biz and Developers are available for comment.

The full list including the top ten can be viewed here
http://www.pocketgamer.biz/list/62773/top-50-mobile-game-developers-of-2016/

Or view the video of the Top 50 here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UZGrLovn2E4

The PocketGamer.biz Awards are in there 7th year and continue to demonstrate just how global and dynamic the mobile game industry is, with representatives in the top ten from the Nordics, Europe, Asia and the US. These awards are incredibly important in being visible in the global market place and to the wider games industry. Interestingly five in the top ten are Asian.

Some developers have found that they are appearing for the first time, showing how much can change in a year in the mobile games industry. But some are appearing for years running, demonstrating they’ve cracked this very challenging market.

Jon Jordan, PocketGamer.biz, said:
‘A number of factors go into the decision of winners: Financial is key, but the criteria also includes wider issues: is a company successfully operating in different global regions (or just one); across many – and/or different – platforms; running a single big title or experimenting with different genres and themes; and looking to expand?’

‘We also take into account a company’s soft power: how does it present itself to players and the industry at large and we love to reward ambitious startups who are attempting to innovate and shake up the entire market.’

‘But, let’s be clear. The lodestone running throughout our entire process is the quality of each developer’s game(s). For, not only is this list an attempt to gauge the top developers over the past 12 months, it’s also the attempt to highlight those who will be making the headlines over the year.’

‘And the quality of a company’s mobile games is – in my opinion – the best (if not the only) measure of this.’

Saara Bergström, CMO, Next Games
‘2015 was an awesome year for Next Games with our two first game launches. Our unique collaboration with AMC, The Walking Dead: No Man’s Land has been well-received among the TV show fans and has fared tremendously well on the store charts. We have plenty of big surprises in store for 2016 and can’t wait to get them out into our players’ hands!’

Chris Akhavan, Glu Mobile
‘We’re delighted Glu has made the PG.biz Top 50 2016 list! It’s great to see Pocket Gamer continuing to recognize talent across the industry. Our inclusion is a testament to the hard work of our studio teams over the past year.  We’d also like to congratulate the other Top 50 finalists.’

Wilhelm That, Rovio Entertainment
‘Fabulous to be recognised amongst the best of the best! Honoured!’

Simon Hade, Space Ape Games
‘Thanks Pocket Gamer! We are honored to be included in the Top 50; we are dedicated to keep making games we are passionate about.’

Antoine Morcos, Ketchapp
‘We’re very pleased to be included in the Top 50 list this year, and humbly accept this recognition, on behalf of the developers we work with, as a reflection of their beautiful work.’

Sean Lee, Wargaming
‘Wargaming is honored and delighted to be included on this year’s PG.biz Top 50 list. To make every Player happy is our vision as a company, and we promise to continue to deliver even more happiness to our Players around the world.’

Maxim Petrov, CPO, ZeptoLab
‘2015 was a really important year for us: we successfully launched our first free-to-play title outside Cut the Rope franchise — King of Thieves — and it became a real hit. This was a result of two years of hard work on searching an innovative core gameplay, but we finally proved that we are not a one-hit game studio. Moreover, we didn’t forget about Cut the Rope either: by releasing a new game called Cut the Rope: Magic, we grew the series’ installs up to 800 million. We are glad that PG.biz noticed all these facts and included us into its Top 50 rating.’

Tom van Dam, Head of Mobile Business Development, NetEase
‘We’re all enormously proud to have been included in the PocketGamer.biz Top 50 Developers List and honoured to be listed among such esteemed fellow developers. It’s a happy recognition of the hard work and dedication put in by a huge number of people across NetEase, all talented and creative individuals, as well as a reflection of our loyal gaming community the world over. With the massive success of Fantasy Westward Journey and other new mobile games, it’s been a hugely productive year for us. And there is much more to come!’

Ben Liu, Pocket Gems
‘We’re honored to be counted as one of the world’s top developers by Pocket Gamer. Mobile games have come a long way in recent years and we believe we can build on our pioneering history to make something truly great. With new advancements in technology, developers exploring different concepts, and greater player interest, there’s never been a more exciting time to be making mobile games.’

Train2Game News Pocket Gamer Awards

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Steel Media is as excited as a Jack Russell puppy to officially launch the 2015 edition of the Pocket Gamer Awards.

Now in their sixth year, the Pocket Gamer Awards 2015 (http://www.pocketgamer.co.uk/pgawards2015) continue the event’s now established tradition of celebrating the very finest from the world of portable gaming.

As has now become standard practice, any title released on app stores or reviewed by Pocket Gamer between 1st January and 31st December of the previous year is open to consideration by the site’s editorial team during the selection of the finalists.

This time around that meant just short of 1,000 games were evaluated for inclusion in the 20 slots available for each of the 14 categories split across traditional format- and genre-specific sections.

Following the hugely popular format of the two most recent Pocket Gamer Awards, while the PG team shortlists the nominees it is the site’s readers who decide the winners. Voting for each of the categories is now open and will remain so until midnight GMT on 27th February 2015.

The Pocket Gamer Awards 2015 winners will then be announced at a special event held during the Game Developers Conference, which takes place in San Francisco between 2nd and 6th March 2015.

This year’s Pocket Gamer Awards are sponsored by Games Solution Centre and Chukong Technologies.

Train2Game News: Train2Game talk to Pocket Gamer

Choosing Microsoft’s forthcoming Windows 8 wasn’t the only notable aspect of Train2Game’s recent game jam at the University of Bedfordshire.
The event was also a world record breaker.
The 48 hour hack saw a total of 299 students come together to create a series of games fit for the platform’s Metro UI, with an adjudicator from Guinness giving the event his seal of approval when the coding was over.
But, according to Train2Game course director Myra Smallman, Train2Game’s hacks aren’t all about setting records – they’re also about helping newcomers gain exposure, and uniting them with the platform most suited to the kind of games jams deliver: mobile.
We caught up with Smallman for her take on Train2Game’s record breaking bash in Bedford.


Pocket Gamer: What makes Windows 8 a good platform for today’s students to familiarise themselves with?
Myra Smallman: On our courses we aim to give students training with a wide range of different development tools.
We see Windows 8 as a vital development tool for them to be able to use as we think it will be one of the main platforms for games design in the future. It also supports the native languages they are familiar and comfortable with.
The students have the chance to choose what is right for them – C++/DX, HTML5/JS, XAML, C#

Can you tell us some more about the event’s ‘best in show’ winner, Royal Rush? Will it be released on Windows Store?
Royal Rush was chosen as the winner because the judges could see so many positives about the game.
The team jelled well together, the game used an innovative gaming mechanic and was perfect as a mobile title, with drop in game play and it’s instantly addictive.
We hope to see it in the Windows Store for Windows 8 on 26 October.

The game jam produced some 20 games, which have apparently been submitted for review to the Windows Store. How many of these will make it to market, and what slice of the profits would students see if so?
The plan is for all the games to be free to download, so there’s no revenue to share, but this is a great promotional opportunity for the students and their games.
Some would say there’s more value in them showcasing their work at this point in their careers, rather than making a quick buck.

Microsoft’s Andrew Webber, Guinness World Records’ Gaz Deaves and Myra Smallman


One thing we try to communicate to the students is the that gaming is a business, publishing and marketing are going to be vital to their future in the games industry. This experience is part of our whole ethos of getting students ready for work.
We hope to see the vast majority of the games in the Windows Store as long as they meet the required quality measures for successful submission.

Is a 48 hour game jam actually a good way of developing games intended for release??
Primarily, game jams are fun, but we also like to think that they teach our students how to work as a team and how to work under pressure.
We are very proud that our students have a level of dedication and talent that has allowed them to produce playable games within 48 hours.
In terms of quality of a release, it’s unlikely that all the titles completed in this way will be up to the standard of a game built over months or even years, but what it can produce is innovation.
Many mobile titles are based around a simple and addictive gaming mechanic, and the game jam environment is ideal to produce this simplistic game play that demonstrates a clever idea. Should one of the games prove particularly popular it could be further developed in the future by the students that created it.

Do you imagine you will work together with Microsoft on a similar sort of event in the future?
Hopefully. At the moment we are all exhausted, but we very much enjoyed working with Microsoft.
Those at Microsoft involved provided tremendous support to our students and given the opportunity we would very much like to work with them again.
Thanks to Myra for her time.