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发布时间:2011-06-13 16:17:55 Tags:,,

作者:Bobbie Johnson


Rovio高管Peter Vesterbacka(他被誉为Rovio的“神鹰”)近来谈论投资内容甚多,在最近的伦敦Inspire Conference大会上,就Rovio的公司计划发表了相关谈话。从此谈话中,我们可以看出Rovio颇有雄心。他首先谈到了公司的“招募和收购”策略,还表示希望进军动画领域(游戏邦注:事实上,Rovio已在不久前收购了芬兰动画工作室Kombo)。除此之外,Vesterbacka还表示,他们希望Rovio在2012年能够成为中国最具知名度的娱乐品牌。



你也许会有疑问:为什么是中国?因为中国是个庞大的市场。Vesterbacka认为,开发《愤怒的小鸟》电影、动画片、毛绒玩具及其他产品,能够使《愤怒的小鸟》成为一个真正的娱乐品牌,获得同Hello Kitty一样的成就。


但如果在取得一个巨大的成功之后只是考虑“下一步该怎么做”,那只能说明这家公司的发展目光极其短浅。因为不管他们的计划是什么,也不管这些计划多么宏大,都只是围绕《愤怒的小鸟》而展开。炙手可热的品牌似乎终会淡出大众的视线。举些例子来说,即使《Cabbage Patch Kids》这款游戏早前取得了巨大成功,但其开发商最终还是走上了破产的道路;日本世嘉的巨作《Sonic the Hedgehog》虽然迅速成为文化触点,但是最终也无法成为推动世嘉进一步发展的有利武器。

为取得长久胜利,Rovio必须抓住并好好利用《愤怒的小鸟》所带来的机遇,为大众创造出另外一款佳作,建立属于自己的“游戏帝国”,这也是推动其它巨头公司进一步发展并取得成功的商业模式。例如任天堂正是利用《超级马里奥》和NES(游戏邦注:任天堂娱乐系统)的成功创造自身发展平台,制作新硬件和《Zelda》、《Pokemon》之类的作品。孩之宝早期凭借《Mr. Potato Head》这款游戏而备受瞩目,随后在此基础上添加新想法、推出新巨作,但是他们并未因此而止步不前,而是继续创造其他深受欢迎的游戏,让自己成为主流玩具、棋盘游戏和人形公仔领域的巨头。


Why Rovio must think about life after Angry Birds

By Bobbie Johnson

Rovio is on a tear right now. In just a couple of years, the Finnish games company behind Angry Birds has gone from being just another developer to owning one of the hottest properties on the planet. The game itself has now been downloaded more than 200 million times — a level of success that has helped the business raise $42 million to fund further expansion plans.

On the back of its investment, Rovio boss Peter Vesterbacka (his job title is actually “Mighty Eagle,” but I can’t bring myself to say that out loud) has been talking a lot recently, most recently at the Inspire Conference in London, outlining those plans. And they are certainly ambitious. For starters, he wants to get into the business of ”hiring and acquiring”; in addition, he wants to move more heavily into animation (in fact, last week Rovio bought Finnish animation studio Kombo). And if that wasn’t enough, he also says he wants to make the company the most popular entertainment brand in China in 2012.

You may well ask: China? Well, it’s a huge market, and Vesterbacka thinks that the development of Angry Birds–related films, animated series, plush toys and other goods can help it become an entertainment franchise that apes the level of success of, say, Hello Kitty.

You can’t blame Rovio for wanting to cash in on its success, of course — not least because striking gold wasn’t luck but part of a long-term plan to create a monster hit that very nearly failed to pay off. Indeed, the company had made 51 games before it made Angry Birds, a process that saw them come close to bankruptcy at points (this in-depth piece from Wired UK gives plenty of background).

But even though it has a huge success on its hands, is this a short-sighted answer to the question of “where next”? After all, all these plans, however grand, are essentially about one thing: exploiting Angry Birds. Seemingly unstoppable brands can get milked to within an inch of their life. For example: The original makers of Cabbage Patch Kids went bankrupt, despite wild early success; and Sega’s Sonic the Hedgehog was a smash that rapidly became a cultural touch point — yet failed to help the company in the longer term.

In order to have lasting success, the chances are that Rovio needs to try and use the success of Angry Birds to breed another huge hit — to build an empire. That’s the model that other top companies have followed to develop broad, highly successful media properties. Nintendo used the success of Mario and the NES to build a platform that kept it going forward, creating new hardware and franchises like Zelda and Pokemon. A toy company like Hasbro, which started with Mr. Potato Head, reinvested in new ideas, created new hits and slowly built itself into a giant that now dominates toys, board games and action figures.

I’m sure that Vesterbacka and his team are well aware that fads run rampant in toys and games. But in order to make something that really lasts, they must make sure that when the next Angry Birds comes along — whatever it is — they are the ones who made it.(source:gigaom