2012 has been a year of big releases and big numbers for Miniclip, both on our website (where we’ve released over 120 new games) and with our mobile games on iOS and Android. Let’s take a look back through the year and see what we’ve been up to.
Back in June we were very excited to head over to San Francisco to see 8 Ball Pool make its Google+ debut at the Google I/O conference, an event which brings together thousands of the world’s leaders on the web and mobile. The Google+ version of Pool allows players to video chat whilst playing against each other, fitting in appropriately with the social nature of Google+’s Hangouts.
The Pool debut was during the talk “The Next Generation of Social Is In A Hangout”, about 45 minutes in; you can play from that point below:
Hot on the tail of the Pool release, in July we refreshed the design of the main Miniclip site in order to more closely bring together our desktop site with our Android and iPhone offerings.
Miniclip’s Director of Web Development, Ben, offered a little insight into how his team, Team Binary, managed the redesign project:
When we were half way through the development of the 2012 website redesign I came up with the “genius” idea of having a hack week – where we got all the developers together and worked an intense week to make a big dent in the project.
To make up for the longer hours I asked Bryony, our Community Manager, to organise some treats to surprise the team with.
Over the course of the week we had cheerleaders come and cheer us up, a Mariachi band perform, a masseuse help us to relax, we played some musical bingo (with one of the male company directors dressed as Madonna), and we ate what we affectionately call the Nyan cake (a 6 layer cake in the colours of the rainbow).
It was really hard work – but we’ve never been so close as a team – and we’ve never coded as much as we did in such a short space of time.
The new look also introduced a host of new social features, including better localisation of the site and a new comments system for our games, which you’ll have seen. We also introduced some new features to the site which meant we were able to release mobile games at the same time as their desktop counterparts, as you’ll have seen with titles such as NeoMech and Rail Rush.
The very end of July saw the start of the London 2012 Olympics, and Miniclip was delighted to host the London 2012 Olympics Official Minigame, which you might’ve played earlier on in the year. The minigame featured 110m hurdles, swimming, long jump, archery, table tennis and skeet, which proved enough to keep everyone occupied during the hours when the Olympians weren’t competing for actual gold medals.
Miniclip’s Head of Games, Alex, commented on London 2012 game:
The Olympics have been such a big event for London and the UK we were over the moon when we had the opportunity to do the Official MiniGame. My chances of making a real Olympics are sadly in line with my talent at digital Olympics!
Going back to Rail Rush, September saw the mining adventure’s simultaneous release on Android, iOS and web, with the iOS version reaching two million downloads in a month and the Android version quickly becoming one of the top apps in the Google Play store. Alex again commented on the game:
Definite case of RSI coming on as I can’t stop playing this game. Some of the scores and videos we have seen show some wildly impressive scores out there!
September also saw all of Miniclip’s mobile titles surpass one hundred million downloads, an absolutely huge figure. Imagine each download was a cake. That’s one hundred millions cakes.
The other big news in September was Miniclip partnered with award-winning producer Albie Hecht — who has been responsible for titles such as SpongeBob SquarePants and Dora the Explorer — to bring Miniclip’s most popular games to television and film. Watch out for more news on this in the future!
In October we launched this blog! Through the blog we’ve been able to keep you much more up-to-date with what we’re doing and show you a bit more about how we work and the people behind the games. We’ve done things like show you round Miniclip UK’s shiny office, introduce you to Miniclip’s Team Mobile and bring you some longer-form pieces like how we beheaded Big Rob.
November was the month Miniclip took to Facebook to ask you, our users, to choose a dance video for us to recreate. You chose Gangnam Style, as I explained in the behind-the-scenes blog post:
At the start of the month we put an option on our Facebook page every day over four days and said we’d recreate whichever option had the most likes. Two options emerged as the clear front-runners: Gangnam Style and Party Rock Anthem. It was close, but Gangnam Style overcame Party Rock Anthem’s 1011 like total to win with 1171 likes.
The resulting video was something we were all really proud of, so check it out:
And now we’re into December already! This month we’ve released the much-anticipated update to 8 Ball Pool, which introduces to the game new tournaments, new tables and cues and a revamped look and ranking system.
We also introduced brand new Pool Coins, which add an extra incentive to win a 1-on-1 game or tournament: there are Pool Coins at stake! You can win Pool Coins in 1-on-1 matches or tournaments, as well as earn them every 30 minutes and for playing daily.
We ran through all of the changes to 8 Ball Pool right here on the blog, so if you’ve not read about them already, check out the details! And if you’ve not played the game yet, play it now on Miniclip.com!
2012 has been a great year for Miniclip, but 2013 is going to be even better; we’ve got some great games planned we can’t wait to tell you about, so make sure you’re following us on Facebook and Twitter so you don’t miss out. Thank you for gaming with us this year 🙂