GameHouse, the gaming division of RealNetworks, has announced that the company is expanding its social game studio to a new office at 712 Yates in Victoria, where it aims to double its staff to at least 45 people by the end of 2012. GameHouse Canada takes an indie approach to game production, encouraging designers to express their creative freedom during game development. The new downtown studio opens on January 16th and will offer its staff several perks including an open and collaborative working environment, a plush gaming and entertainment lounge, creative Fridays, and more.“Social game development is the number one priority for our company in 2012 and Victoria is an attractive area for expansion due to the city’s high caliber of talent combined with a great quality of life.” said Matt Hulett, chief gamer at GameHouse. “I believe this strategic expansion of our social games studio in Victoria will not only grow our games portfolio, but it will also solidify our leadership position in the overall games industry.”
The decision to expand follows the release of GameHouse’s successful Facebook games – Collapse! Blast and the recently released Bayou Blast. Both games were launched in the second half of this year and attracted nearly 400,000 daily players. With a total of 3.7 million users playing all its social games each month, GameHouse is hiring aggressively in both Seattle and Victoria and focused on getting the right people in place to make games that millions of people love to play.
Hulett confirmed that GameHouse has invested at least $10 million towards the company’s social gaming initiatives in 2011 and revenues are growing at triple-digit rates. Taking over the top floor of a building located within the Downtown Business District of Victoria, the new studio will specialize in creating popular games on Facebook, Google+, and other emerging social platforms.
“It’s a privilege to work at one of the top social game studios in the best city in the world,” said Alex Mendelev, general manager of GameHouse Canada. “Several of the best designers, developers and producers have already joined our studio for this same reason, and we intend to more than double the size of our team next year.”