Game Insight announced it is putting over $5 million into a new division focused on making projects for Messenger. The Lithuanian company makes city sims, builders, and hidden-object casual games, and it already launched Tribez Rush (a match-3 game in Game Insight’s prehistoric The Tribez brand) for the chat platform. It says it has seven more releases in production, too.
Messenger-style apps are key to game distribution in Asian markets led by companies like Tencent and Line, but that business model hasn’t caught on in the West — and Line has even abandoned the United States. But with Facebook jumping into this space, it could make this gaming business work as long as the technology functions as promised. And that could benefit a company like Big Viking Games.
In addition to the investment in a division focused on Instant Games, Game Insight has also acquired Alis Games, creators of the critically-acclaimed Need a Hero game. The next game in the series, Need a Hero: Puzzle Rush, will be Game Insight’s second offering on Instant Games. Need a Hero: Puzzle Rush takes the series’ gem-busting action and evolves it with time-based play, hidden rows, and more.
The company says this new division will make casual, mid-core (these are more like traditional games, but they play in shorter spurts), and hardcore releases. It also hopes that bringing games to Messenger gets their brands like Tribez in front of new players, making discovery easier here than in traditional app stores.
“Game Insight has made sizable investments in new technologies and existing brands over the last year, which has helped us make an early entry onto Instant Games,” said CEO Anatoly Ropotov in a canned statement. “We have always been among the first to support new platforms so that we can offer the most enjoyable games on the most exciting platforms.