The grass is green on our side too!
Whenever a topic revolving around the success of the gaming industry is brought up, what would your initial thought be? More often than not, we forget or are simply just unaware of the achievements we have accomplished right here in our very own country. With so many homegrown talented individuals, we are definitely making a name for ourselves in this industry. Aside from our talent pool, the government also plays a huge role in growing the industry. Particularly, Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), has been pushing the Malaysian industry forward.
In conjunction to celebrating our 60th Independence Day today, let’s take a look at Malaysia’s achievements in the Gaming Industry.
International recognition for our games
Inspired by games like Fantasy Life and Rune Factory, Re: Legend is basically a monster raising and farming JRPG. Magnus Games, started a crowdfunding for the development of this game on Kickstarter. Within the first 18 hours, they hit their goal of $70, 000. The crowdfunding campaign started on July 26, 2017, and in within a month they’ve gotten supports from 7, 385 backers. By the end of the campaign, they raised more funds than they asked for – a big total of $630, 700! If you haven’t already guessed it, yes, Magnus Games is a local company based in Kuala Lumpur. This overwhelming support from so many people around the world is validation that our local developers can make great games too! If you want to support them and get some back-exclusive in-game item, you can do so here.
Sara is Missing
Around the end of 2016, a mobile game developed by a local company, Monsoon Lab, went viral. Big time YouTubers like Markiplier and Jacksepticeye both uploaded a video of themselves playing the game on their respective channel. This garnered a lot of attention for the game with Markiplier’s video getting 4.6 million views and Jacksepticeye getting 6.2 million views. Sara is Missing is a mystery horror game and Monsoon Lab won two awards for the game! The game was awarded Best Upcoming Game and Jury’s Honorable Mention at the International Mobile Gaming Award SEA. If you want to give it a try, you can download the game here.
There are also other games worthy of its recognition such as Alien Hive and Agent RX. Be sure to check them out from your Google PlayStore or the App Store.
We’ve got the power!
I’m sure by now most gamers would know that our very own Wan Hazmer was the lead game designer for Final Fantasy XV. The game achieved great success and is even getting a PC and mobile version! He interjected the culture of Malaysia into the town of Lestallum, introducing the mamak stall culture and a few local delicacies such as roti canai and satay. Now we can proudly say that we have a Malaysian working with Square Enix and that’s a pretty big deal.
But, did you know that Malaysians were also involved in the development of several triple-A games? We have Passion Republic who contributed to games like Uncharted 4: The Thief’s End, Uncharted 4: The Lost Legacy and Dark Souls III. The game development powerhouse, Streamline Studios, contributed to games such as Street Fighter V, Bioshock Infinite, and Final Fantasy XV: Monster of the Deep VR. If you’re interested in the rest of their work, check out their portfolio.
Edit: Thanks to user, Afiq Azman for notifying us on our Facebook page, we’d also like to include the contribution of Codemaster Studio! They are most well-known for creating popular racing game titles such as the DiRT series and the Formula 1 series. Codemaster Studio was initially founded in Southam, UK. Established in 2006, Codemaster KL is the first production facility outside of the UK. The studio in Kuala Lumpur is mainly responsible for creating content for the Formula 1 franchise. Another cool fact about the studio is that it is highly involved in bringing up new talents. The studio has been working with local universities and colleges since 2009 by providing training in Games Art Development.
The Government Has Our Back
For years now, MDEC has been working hard to push our country forward into this industry. In a recent interview with BFM: The Business Radio Station, Hasnul Hadi Samsudin, Vice President of Creative Content and Technologies, said that “Well it’s not really at the end of the tunnel, but I (do) see in the light. There’s still a lot to be done.”
In their effort to make Malaysia a reputable gaming hub, they recently partnered up with Media Prima to further propel the growth. With the collaboration, they expect to attract more players and developers both locally and internationally to work together and boost the development of the digital game in our country. MDEC is also responsible for hosting events which provide our local talents a stage to shine on
Most notably, Level UP KL, Southeast Asia’s premier gaming conference, has been the driving force in attracting international investors. Level UP KL 2017 is happening this year from the November 4 until November 8. Held for the third year running, the event will feature a 36 hour game jam, technical workshops, and conference from key players of the industry. The panel of speaker this year is rather impressive, featuring big figures like Bryan Recktenwald from Naughty Dogs and Danny Khoo from Marvel Entertainment.
One of the biggest validation we’ve received this year is having PlayStation Experience SEA 2017 held in Kuala Lumpur. All this while, PSX was held either in America or Europe. It was a big honour that they chose Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia as their venue for the very first PSX SEA.
Not All Heroes Wear Cape
So far, we’ve brought up all the big shots and what they’ve been doing for the industry. But, we shouldn’t forget that the gaming community in Malaysia is also a one of the big factors. I’m pretty sure we shocked Sony when so many of us showed up for PSX. With the community being so welcoming and eager, here’s hoping more gaming events will come to Malaysia!
I’d like to bring out Fundeavour in particular for this. Fundeavour’s aim is to help up and coming streamers or content creators gain exposure. Through a quest-like feature, they also help these budding sprouts to prep for starting up. By adding gamification to their quest feature, users earn EXP from completing these quests and can, later on, use it to redeem for gaming gears or Steam funds. If you’re looking to start streaming or make YouTube videos but have absolutely no idea where to start, head over to Fundeavour and get questing! We’ve also got an exclusive interview with one of the founders, Lylia, coming up for you tomorrow. Remember to come back and read about her and Fundeavours’ achievements.
Last but not least, Selamat Hari Merdeka to all Malaysians. Let’s keep moving forward together to level Malaysia up in the gaming industry!