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View Full Version : Who is Area 52?



ExtraCheese
03-06-2015, 05:30 AM
Ok the teaser trailer triggered me to do some research on Area 52 games, as they are responsible for developing the game after Pipeworks left.

Founded: 2013
Employees: 11-50
LinkedIn description: We are an interactive game studio focusing on free to play games for mobile and PC platforms in the Pacific Northwest. Our team of top notch talent have worked on some of the most beloved games in the industry and we're hiring! Please check out www.area52games.com/category/careers/ for more information.

The studio is focused on free to play games for mobile and PC platforms, claiming to have worked on "some of the most beloved games in the industry". What games and which talents? Let's take a look at the known Area 52 team.

CEO: Jason Robar (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jasonrobar),
Specialties:Free to Play / Browser Based
Games based on Brands / IP
Online Gaming (MMP/MMOG, Mobile, Console and PC)
Overseas development (China, Korea, Russia, India)
Casual Games
Advertising-based Game Development
Serious Games / Games for Learning, Education and Training

His linkedIn tells us he founded a lot of studio's which I personally don't know. I can not find a proper game he worked on... His specialties are also not really what we would expect from a RCTW developer. It has "mobile and casual" all over it.

6 other employees are listed on LinkedIn of which I can't see the profile, but I can see their functions:
https://www.linkedin.com/vsearch/p?f_CC=3558586&trk=extra_biz_employees_deg_connected
- COO
- Chief Games Officer
- VP of Marketing & Community (I'm sure she is on a 6 month vacation or something)
- Principal Engineer
- Sr. Staff Engineer
- Office Manager

That's it, only 7 employees on LinkedIn. So what about other social / web media?
Twitter: Last post from August 2014, containing a photo of a fridge and somebody's drawing over it (?)
Facebook: Last post from 16 December 2014, announcing the RCTW collaboration with Atari, 55 likes and 12 comments. Some comments asked for updates, no reply.
News: 24 May 2014, Star Wars Attack Squadrons cancelled by Area 52 Games. "The studio announced that it has shuttered the free-to-play space combat title to focus on other Star Wars projects." What other projects? The only projects shown on their website or found anywhere else is RCTW.
Website: http://www.area52games.com/, Not really much to look at. Last update on their blog from June 6th 2014, only containing that everybody should read their blog for more updates. The only games they are working on is RCTW. The news section (head page) doesn't really show any information besides how they have interns and an announcement they are working on RCTW.

I could not find any other social media or any other news items.

So what else?
Apparently their office is located here: https://www.google.nl/maps/place/371+NE+Gilman+Blvd,+Issaquah,+WA+98027,+Verenigde+ Staten/@47.533,-122.030204,3a,75y,154.84h,86.41t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sRT6pBZbnx5rmrsXIL2JhtA!2e0!4m2 !3m1!1s0x5490657de6fcac2d:0x99d3507fad1f6141
(source: http://www.bloomberg.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?privcapId=249858879)
That doesn't really say anything, but I figured I could just post is here for information.

Concluding
There is very little to be found on Area52 games and it's employees. They don't seem to care a lot about marketing and community since their social media accounts have been silent for half a year now. They also don't seem to care to update anything on their website (which is of course a company's digital contact card). There are not a lot of people working at Area52. Their specialty is "free to play games for mobile and PC platforms". On a more personal note: Do I think Area52 can create a proper new installment of our beloved Rollercoaster Tycoon series? No I think not. They do not show any experience in creating games whatsoever. The teaser trailer (if showing current game status) shows they have completely destroyed everything Pipeworks has worked on.

I know this post may be deleted, but please realize I'm not bashing or insulting anyone, I am merely trying to educate the community here since no one else is doing that.

Deuce
03-06-2015, 07:26 AM
Very interesting. Seems like a very small (cheap..) solution for Atari to employ to develop a game in such a massive franchise as RCT.

I wonder if they effectively gave up spending £££ when they learned Frontier were making their own game. Perhaps Area52 were chosen simply to get a game out the door for the sake of cashing in, knowing that anything is better than nothing as they can't beat whatever Frontier have in development.

justinm_
03-06-2015, 07:57 AM
100% agree im more excited for what frontier has coming next year than what atari has come up with. I think whatever atari produces wont be what we want because everything they have done is based off of money. They bring out 'RCT4' as a crappy farmville style game for mobile, they scrap pipeworks (an experienced team of people) for area 52 (a company that no one has heard of) and we expect them to bring out the next instalment in the legendary RCT series, I'm sorry but as much as i don't like saying it, its not going to happen. Atari should sell the whole series to a company that is capable of making games in 2015.

Deuce
03-06-2015, 08:05 AM
So true. Atari should sell.

They want to make money off the back of the franchise alone. Which is fair enough but the game itself needs to be good.

It should be produced by someone that wants the game to succeed because it's amazing, and then enjoy the extra sales that come from the franchise it sits within. I feel like atari are basically relying on just the franchise history to get people excited enough to buy.

Or to look at it another way... If this wasn't an RCT game, and was produced by someone you had never heard of, it wouldn't even be worth discussing would it? We would have seen the trailer, s******ed, and gone straight back to RCT3.

Angel
03-06-2015, 08:34 AM
...We would have seen the trailer, s******ed, and gone straight back to RCT3.
Now THAT is an excellent suggestion! :D

Just saying...

VACkillers
03-06-2015, 09:15 AM
Ok the teaser trailer triggered me to do some research on Area 52 games, as they are responsible for developing the game after Pipeworks left.

Founded: 2013
Employees: 11-50
LinkedIn description: We are an interactive game studio focusing on free to play games for mobile and PC platforms in the Pacific Northwest. Our team of top notch talent have worked on some of the most beloved games in the industry and we're hiring! Please check out www.area52games.com/category/careers/ for more information.

The studio is focused on free to play games for mobile and PC platforms, claiming to have worked on "some of the most beloved games in the industry". What games and which talents? Let's take a look at the known Area 52 team.

CEO: Jason Robar (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jasonrobar),
Specialties:Free to Play / Browser Based
Games based on Brands / IP
Online Gaming (MMP/MMOG, Mobile, Console and PC)
Overseas development (China, Korea, Russia, India)
Casual Games
Advertising-based Game Development
Serious Games / Games for Learning, Education and Training

His linkedIn tells us he founded a lot of studio's which I personally don't know. I can not find a proper game he worked on... His specialties are also not really what we would expect from a RCTW developer. It has "mobile and casual" all over it.

6 other employees are listed on LinkedIn of which I can't see the profile, but I can see their functions:
https://www.linkedin.com/vsearch/p?f_CC=3558586&trk=extra_biz_employees_deg_connected
- COO
- Chief Games Officer
- VP of Marketing & Community (I'm sure she is on a 6 month vacation or something)
- Principal Engineer
- Sr. Staff Engineer
- Office Manager

That's it, only 7 employees on LinkedIn. So what about other social / web media?
Twitter: Last post from August 2014, containing a photo of a fridge and somebody's drawing over it (?)
Facebook: Last post from 16 December 2014, announcing the RCTW collaboration with Atari, 55 likes and 12 comments. Some comments asked for updates, no reply.
News: 24 May 2014, Star Wars Attack Squadrons cancelled by Area 52 Games. "The studio announced that it has shuttered the free-to-play space combat title to focus on other Star Wars projects." What other projects? The only projects shown on their website or found anywhere else is RCTW.
Website: http://www.area52games.com/, Not really much to look at. Last update on their blog from June 6th 2014, only containing that everybody should read their blog for more updates. The only games they are working on is RCTW. The news section (head page) doesn't really show any information besides how they have interns and an announcement they are working on RCTW.

I could not find any other social media or any other news items.

So what else?
Apparently their office is located here: https://www.google.nl/maps/place/371+NE+Gilman+Blvd,+Issaquah,+WA+98027,+Verenigde+ Staten/@47.533,-122.030204,3a,75y,154.84h,86.41t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sRT6pBZbnx5rmrsXIL2JhtA!2e0!4m2 !3m1!1s0x5490657de6fcac2d:0x99d3507fad1f6141
(source: http://www.bloomberg.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?privcapId=249858879)
That doesn't really say anything, but I figured I could just post is here for information.

Concluding
There is very little to be found on Area52 games and it's employees. They don't seem to care a lot about marketing and community since their social media accounts have been silent for half a year now. They also don't seem to care to update anything on their website (which is of course a company's digital contact card). There are not a lot of people working at Area52. Their specialty is "free to play games for mobile and PC platforms". On a more personal note: Do I think Area52 can create a proper new installment of our beloved Rollercoaster Tycoon series? No I think not. They do not show any experience in creating games whatsoever. The teaser trailer (if showing current game status) shows they have completely destroyed everything Pipeworks has worked on.

I know this post may be deleted, but please realize I'm not bashing or insulting anyone, I am merely trying to educate the community here since no one else is doing that.

That was a good report, it was about the same information that I could find, you were able to find out more about how many employees they have, but I was able to find out that the developers they have right now have worked on games like age of empires (guessing the online one) and a couple racing sims...

coaster6
03-06-2015, 11:04 AM
We'll create a cheap mobile game to get our awareness up. We'll hire a company to make a few good assets. We'll dump the for a cheap solution. We'll throw a well known label on the game and push up the price.