KIXEYE opens Australian studio

San Francisco-based competitive strategy game developer KIXEYE opened its first Australian studio last week in Brisbane.

San Francisco-based competitive strategy game developer KIXEYE opened its first Australian studio last week in Brisbane.

KIXEYE Australia consists of the former employees of 3 Blokes Studios, an Australian game development studio that was closed in April when its then-owner, RockYou, decided to change direction and move away from strategy game development, which 3 Blokes Studios specialized in.

The general manager of 3 Blokes Studios – now KIXEYE Australia – George Fidler told Polygon that the team at 3 Blokes has a long history of developing strategy games and they wanted to find a partner that would take advantage of that skill.

"Basically we’re a bunch of gamers and game developers and with the demise of the old industry we really were looking for opportunities to transition into the new digital industry," Fidler said. "But most of those opportunities have been in very casual games and, to be honest, that hasn’t really provided us with anything really exciting to do."

"For us it was really just a marriage made in heaven."

Fidler said that the team has had experience working in the traditional strategy gaming space, with numerous of the developers working on the Total War series at The Creative Assembly. When 3 Blokes was under the ownership of RockYou, the studio made the popular strategy space game, Galactic Allies.

"KIXEYE gave us the opportunity to work on real games that were unashamedly games in the strategy genre, which is what we're most passionate about – it's really an opportunity of a lifetime," Fidler said.

Fidler says the team approached KIXEYE and both sides saw value in each other: KIXEYE saw the value 3 Blokes Studios brought from the old industry, and 3 Blokes Studios saw the success KIXEYE had achieved with large-scale, browser-based strategy games.

"So for us it was really just a marriage made in heaven and this team couldn’t be more excited about that opportunity."

The opening of KIXEYE Australian means the 11 developers who worked at 3 Blokes Studios will be able to focus on making strategy games with a new global parent company. The studio plans to grow in Australia and Fidler says they are already on the lookout for more talent in the local industry.

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