At the end of September, a gamedev studio MintFrogs, based in Minsk, Belarus, released a trailer of their new title – League of Arosaurs. The game looks a lot like a Pokemon Go and Clash Royale hybrid. We talked with Matvey Fedorenchik, CEO and founder of the studio, about the project.
Image Credit: League of Arosaurs
League of Arosaurs looks fabulous so far, but before we discuss the game, please tell us a little bit about yourself and your studio.
MintFrogs is just six months old, but we already have two titles in store – League of Arosaurs and Towar.io.
Before Mintfrogs, I used to work at MSQRD (program that applies various masks to users’ faces in real time; it was acquired by Facebook in March). I also had experience in startups and was one of the developers of a FinTech application MintPay (allows to make purchases without credit cards, using the QR code).
Judging by the trailer, League of Arosaurs is some kind of a hybrid of Clash Royal and Pokemon GO. Could you tell us about its gameplay?
We started working on League of Arosaurs long before Pokemon GO was released. On the other hand, we did borrow some ideas from Clash Royale. Nevertheless, our game also has completely unique features.
The core gameplay is a hybrid of match-3 and collectible cards games.
In short, every player has three minutes to defeat their opponents by casting ability cards (which cost mana). Opponents, in their turn, will either counter attack or defend, and vice versa.
The principles of metagame are: progressing along leagues (called schools of magic), collecting new cards and upgrading those you have collected. You can only find new cards in chests on the map in AR mode, or you can purchase them for real money.
Brand new features that, to my knowledge, players have never seen before, are:
- Realtime matchmaking on the map (you can see everyone playing League of Arosaurs, like cars in Uber). However, geolocation in the present version of the game is quite limited. We are going to expand it in the nearest future.
- The mix of “three in a row” and CCG gameplay in battle.
League of Arosaurs
You wrote in your Facebook that the project had been in development for half a year. How much does the present version of the game differ from the primary concept?
Some things changed. In the beginning, we wanted to make an entirely new world with new fictional characters, but then we opted for conventional anthropomorphic animals. We decided that it would be difficult to introduce people to an unfamiliar setting.
Your studio demonstrates a high level of production (undoubtedly, the project looks like an AAA title). How did you do it – I mean, all of you as a team? Did you have much iteration, outsourced graphics, expert advice?
No experts whatsoever! Half of our team is without any experience in gamedev. We had just set the right goals and followed the right guides.
I do remember, however, how painful it was at the start. We had to find our own style, which is always difficult. That achieved, we began working faster and more efficiently.
How are you planning to enter the market? All by yourselves, or are you looking for a publisher?
We understand that we are not going to make it all by ourselves, so we are negotiating with Ketchapp, EA, Game Insight, Wargaming, Mail Ru Group, Yodo1, Yuri Gurskiy (Prisma, MSQRD) and even Supercell (they are not publishers but investors). As of now, we cannot say who it will be. The plan is, we make a soft launch and look who offers more value.
Eventually, the team set up a Kickstarter campaign to release the game.