Tech Humans Of Dublin # 37 Nikki Lannen, War Ducks

Mapping Dublin’s tech ecosystem, one human at a time.

We’ve built a hidden object game, Global Agents, which is currently on Facebook Desktop. I worked for Facebook as part of the games team for four and a half years, we worked with a lot of the top gaming companies, and I thought I could give it a shot myself. I think both Facebook and Google throw you out of your comfort zone, and give people here the experience and confidence they need to go out and set up their own businesses. They look for people who are entrepreneurial, and I would have never had gotten into gaming unless I had worked for Facebook. I worked in sales initially, and kind of fell into games. The minute I got into the gaming world I loved it, so much so that I wanted to be part of that world myself, and thought that it was something that I could give a shot. It’s a massive market, one where people can soar and become very successful quickly.

The main gamers on Facebook are older women, it’s an area that people don’t really choose to build for, so we decided to build games for that category – they’re the ones that pay. So far, we’ve engaged with that market really successfully. Our stats are positive, retention is strong, monetization is strong, we have about 50,000 monthly active users, and engagement is through the roof. Right now, our game is being played around 1.2 million times a month. Next, we’re bringing the game to mobile. We want to build a multi-platform game studio here.

Dublin’s a great place to build a business from, there’s a really good community here, especially on South William Street, where we’re based. We call it South Williamsburg Street. It’s a bit hip. Everyone’s pretty close-knit in the tech community, and wants to help each other. We couldn’t be in a better place. There are so many people starting businesses and going for it right now, it’s great. It feels like everyone’s taking risks, and doing well.

I’ve learned that things don’t always go your way. Stay calm, and start again. Be strategic, and be patient. It’s been a really steep learning curve, but I love it. The thing I miss about Facebook is the food (laughs).

@nikkilannen

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