Ahead of the release of ZeptoLab’s King of Thieves, we were able to ask ZeptoLab’s co-founder, Semyon Voinov, a few questions about the inspiration behind the game and what that means for the Cut the Rope franchise.
148Apps: What was the inspiration behind combining so many familiar genres into one package?
Semyon Voinov (SV): The initial idea was brought up by one of our team members. We created a quick prototype, and suddenly many people around the office were eagerly competing with each other, building their defenses and breaking into the opponent's dungeons. There was plenty of laughter and cursing in the process - and we immediately realized that the game had the most important component for success: it drives emotion!
You can find plenty of games in the App Store with the strategic "attack and defend" gameplay (including the famous Clash of Clans), but our game is vastly different because of the arcade skills-based experience at its core. It’s something we haven't seen in any other games and while building King of Thieves, we discovered why: it's a very challenging type of game to build. It took two years of time, dedication, and extensive testing to create a balanced and highly enjoyable game.
148Apps: How do you hope to keep the player’s interest for an extended period of time?
SV: King of Thieves is our first game built from the ground up as a free-to-play experience, and one of the most essential components of any successful F2P game is its ability to entertain players for months or even years. We’re in a good position for this, because the content in our game is mostly user-generated. Players actually build additional levels through customizing their dungeon to defend their precious loot - the number of defense combinations is nearly endless, and the game is constantly evolving.
On top of this, the competition to become the King of Thieves will keep players engaged in the long-term: gamers will be able to steal gold and gems from each other, upgrade their traps, and customize their character. It’s an absolutely unique player-vs-player experience, which is why we believe it will stand out in the crowded mobile gaming market.
148Apps: What made you want to step away from the familiarity of Cut the Rope?
SV: Thanks to Cut the Rope, we’re known as a high-quality developer that creates fun, unique, and challenging games. While we’re still dedicated to the Cut the Rope community and brand, we also want to expand our audience and experiment with other forms of gameplay to grow our fanbase. ZeptoLab’s goal is to bring the highest quality games to the market, regardless of genre.
148Apps: Is this a long term plan for ZeptoLab or will there be a return to the Cut the Rope franchise at some point?
SV: While we remain committed to the Cut the Rope franchise, the team will always be dedicated to creating fresh, new game experiences like King of Thieves. We see this as a 50/50 split of our efforts.
Over the past year, we’ve focused on growing our Cut the Rope community through consistent updates to existing games and new partnerships with big brands like McDonald’s, the (RED) charity, and blockbuster movie brands. We will continue to focus on ways to expand and improve the Cut the Rope brand, while developing new titles like My Om Nom, King of Thieves, and several currently unannounced games.
Thanks to Semyon for taking the time to answer our questions. King of Thieves is set for release in February. We’ll be sure to let you know as and when that happens.