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DragonVale developer Backflip Studios gets into third-party publishing

Above: The high-seas adventure game Seabeard for mobile from HandCircus and Backflip Publishing.

Image Credit: Backflip Publishing

Mobile developer Backflip Studios doesn’t just want to make its own games — it wants to help release other companies’ titles as well.

The studio responsible for mobile hits like DragonVale and Paper Toss is starting up a publishing division. Backflip will use its experience to guide other developers through the process of making mobile games. Former Ngmoco chief publishing officer Simon Jeffrey is joining Backflip to oversee this new initiative. Backflip Publishing is already working with developers LightBox Interactive and HandCircus on a pair of upcoming releases under this new label. Mobile gaming is a $16 billion industry worldwide, and this new effort may help Backflip get a bigger piece of that.

This isn’t the first studio to jump from making to publishing. Mobile companies like Zynga, Ngmoco, and Chillingo have all followed a similar path.

“We are thrilled to be working with someone of Simon’s caliber to help us build out our publishing business,” Backflip Studios founder Julian Farrior said.

Backflip says it wants to focus on a small number of high-quality games. It is looking to build relationships with its third-party development studios, and it thinks the early deals with LightBox Interactive and HandCircus is evidence of that.

LightBox is currently working on the sci-fi spaceship battler PlunderNauts. HandCircus is making an ocean-exploring adventure title Seabeard. Both will debut under the Backflip Publishing label. The companies are not providing a ton of details about the new games at this time, but both are coming out soon.

“Our experience in mobile, game design, monetization, marketing, and our ongoing support beyond launch, are just a few of the advantages to partnering with Backflip Publishing,” said Farrior. “We are looking to bring a small handful of new games to market in the coming year, from indie developers with a history of innovation.”

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More information:

Backflip Studios is a mobile game development company focused on bringing innovative and thoughtful titles to an expanding group of casual gamers. The company’s initial four iPhone releases have all been ranked top 5 in Apple’s ove... read more »

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