Interview with Codebrew Games, the developer of Pocket City
As usual, we were not hired or paid to feature this game. If it’s bad, we’ll tell you it’s bad.
Today we are excited to share our interview with Codebrew Games, the creator of the simplest and single most addictive city builder game we have ever had the pleasure (and pain) of featuring on Edamame Reviews.
As game reviewers, it is our job to break free from even the most addictive games and move on to what players will want to play next. …and we’ve got to say, it’s hard. Getting away from Pocket City is really hard… 😭
If you have yet to check out our review of Pocket City, you can do so here!
Before we start we’d like to thank the Codebrew Games Team for participating in our interview and for answering all of our geeky questions! Thanks Guys!
…and without further ado, our interview begins…
Thanks for taking the time to talk to us about Pocket City! Could you kick-start this interview by telling us a little about your studio, yourself, and what drew you into the gaming industry?
I am a solo developer, so Codebrew Games is actually a one-person operation. I started the studio as a side project while I worked full-time as a software developer in a different industry.
Game development appealed to me because I’ve been a lifelong gamer and wanted to do something creative with that interest. My programming and graphic design background allowed me to create a game on my own as a side project. A couple of friends helped with the audio and dialogue writing as well. I plan to transition into working on games full-time!
Ok, let’s start talking about Pocket City… What are the highlights of your latest release?
Pocket City is my first major release and it has been received very positively. After the initial launch, the game climbed up the top paid ranks for iOS and Android. Players were excited about the lack of microtransactions, and they’ve really enjoyed the city building experience that the game offers. It’s been great to see players sharing the cities they’ve built and discussing strategies with each other to optimize their stats.
What was the core idea or inspiration behind Pocket City? And perhaps more importantly, where do you find inspiration for your games in general?
There are many great city building games for desktop. I wanted to take the classic city-building gameplay from the PC world and optimize it for touch controls. It was important to reduce some of the complexity and only keep the fun parts so that it’s easy to play on mobile. I think touch controls make a lot of sense for the city building genre and is a type of game that I really enjoy playing.
How long was Pocket City in development for? And are there any interesting and/or exciting moments or experiences you would like to share with us from that time?
The development took about three years of working on weekends and evenings. For me, the first exciting moment was when I posted a gif of the game to Reddit and it reached the top of the gaming subreddit. From there, I gained a lot more interest and it prompted me to take the game more seriously. The pre-sale and launch were also very exciting – I did not expect to have as many downloads as I did!
What software, developer-tools, or black-magic(?) did you use when making Pocket City? Is there anything you would like to share with the developers who read Edamame Reviews?
(Edamame) WOW! For anyone who doesn’t know, a hybrid app is essentially a web-game transformed into an app. Although they essentially can be played on anything with a web browser, it is incredibly difficult to stabilize performance! What Codebrew Games has done here is actually quite amazing!
Is there any secret “developer-advice” you can give our lucky players who read this interview?
There’s a bug where multiple shipping docks can be built as long as they are unpowered. Usually, the player is limited to a maximum number of docks, based on their level. I’ll fix the exploit eventually, but for now, it’s a lucrative secret that allows the player to exceed their maximum export capacity.
(Edamame) You can be assured that our beaches will be lined with shipping docks within the next few hours.😁
As a player, we found the gameplay in Pocket City a lot faster than other games such as Sim City. Was this intentional, or did it just sort of happen?
That is intentional – I wanted to make the game easy to pick up and put down in short sessions. I also didn’t want to make the player wait too long for buildings to construct, and rather let them focus on designing and growing their city.
(Edamame) I see… So our addiction to Pocket City wasn’t caused by random chance…😅
What can we expect to see in Pocket City or from Codebrew Games in the not so distant future? What do we have to look forward to next?
For the next while, I will continue to add new updates to Pocket City. One major feature will be larger map options. In the further future, I think it would be exciting to create new Pocket City games with different settings, such as a medieval-era kingdom or perhaps a futuristic world.
Lastly, is there anything you would like to say to our awesome team of Writers, Developers, and Patrons who keep Edamame Reviews up and running?
As a new game developer, it is thanks to the press and supporters of indie games that I was able to find an audience and launch a successful release! I appreciate the team and supporters of Edamame Reviews who put time and energy into promoting the indie gaming industry!
Love our interview with Codebrew Games?
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