April 2015.- Videogames are a regular part of our entertainment and it is logical that they find room in our mobile phones. We now have access to an immense range of apps and programs that cover many of our different needs, including amusement. But although mobile videogames are a reality today, Digital Legends entered this business when they were just a promising idea.
The very beginning
Digital Legends was founded in 2001 as a start-up by a business angel, and also thanks to financial aid from ACCIÓ (then CIDEM). They started initially in an office in just one small room as a small group of four experimented videogame professionals who were completely new to entrepreneurship. However, they got their first client and became a real company by signing ONE, the First Fighting Game for mobile devices using Motion Capture and Bluetooth multiplayer that became a reference in what it was possible to do on smartphones (this case for Nokia, N-Gage, was extremely successful and received many awards). This is how Digital Legends started in the then young and undiscovered field of mobile gaming.
Apple's Catalan partners
It now seems ages ago that the first iPhone 3G came on the scene, but it was actually only in 2008, and Xavier Carrillo was able to be one of the lucky people who accompanied Steve Jobs during this significant event. This relationship started five weeks before the iPhone was presented, when the Apple team asked Digital Legends to reveal on their keynote their game KROLL, specially designed for their new mobile phone. Digital Legends’ partnership with Apple continued to be a success and they also developed the first high definition videogame for iPad, Bruce Lee Dragon Warrior. Even the media echoed this relationship with articles titled like “Apple’s Catalan partners” appearing in the press.
Between 2008 and 2012, Digital Legends continued working closely with Apple and its IOS operating system, as well as beginning to develop videogames for other companies such as Electronic Arts, and for global brands like Adidas, Disney or Universal, also for Android systems. However, the Catalan company decided to combine its partnerships with the commercialization of its own brand in 2012. Digital Legends’ first own videogame, Respawnables, had an immediate international success with more than 22M downloads and over 200,000 people playing every day on-line at any given moment.
Today, it takes around 50 people – mostly engineers – to power Digital Legends. Most of them work in design and programming, while some 10 people are dedicated to R&D for new products. Thanks to this successful strategy, the company’s turnover doubled between 2013 and 2014. If that wasn’t surprising enough, Digital Legends plans to increase their revenues this 2015 even more, something not many companies can achieve. The company knows it has to meet further challenges to keep growing and this is why Digital Legends is now focusing on entering new markets such as Asia, where they have started establishing partnerships with different companies to distribute their products.