Love at First Sight: Kwalee Acquires Narrative Specialists Tictales
Global game publisher moves into casual gaming market with first ever acquisition deal to snap up Perfume of Love and Fictions developer
24 January 2022
Kwalee, a world-leading game developer and multiplatform publisher, has made its first ever studio acquisition with a deal that brings French developer Tictales into its increasingly-global family.
Established as one of the world’s foremost mobile game developers and publishers, Kwalee has achieved more than 750 million downloads across its hypercasual games portfolio.
The deal to buy Tictales is the first acquisition by Kwalee in its 10-year history, signalling its serious intent to build upon global hypercasual success with both casual and hybrid-casual titles.
Tictales, whose narrative-based mobile games have been downloaded more than 6 million times and played for more than 350 million hours, will continue to operate with creative independence while benefiting from Kwalee’s marketing expertise.
14 games have been developed and published by Tictales since the studio’s founding in 2015, including Perfume of Love, Fictions and Swiit Crush - Interactive Stories. The company specialises in free-to-play romance narrative games, and its titles are acclaimed by fans globally.
Headquartered in Leamington Spa, UK, Kwalee has doubled in size over the past year thanks to rapid global expansion. The developer and publisher also has offices in Bangalore, India and Beijing, China along with remote team members all around the world. With the acquisition of Tictales, the company now has team members spread across 18 countries.
Kwalee boasts the world’s most prolific hypercasual games development studio, having published more than 40 number one mobile games – most of which were developed by a dedicated internal team. Internal development is complemented by a dedicated mobile game publishing team working with talented developers all over the world, led by SEGA and Ubisoft veteran Will Cox.
“We have been committed since day one to creating amazing mobile fiction for our audience and I’m very proud of all the team members of Tictales for this milestone,” said Christophe Chocho, Sales Manager and Co-Founder of Tictales.
“The long-term vision of Tictales is to bring bigger franchises to the world, with our production capacity increasing and new talents joining our team. We and Kwalee share the same philosophy about high-quality games and we cannot wait to show our exciting new projects to the world.”
“Our talented team crafts the best narrative experiences for fans to enjoy for many years,” added Harouna Camara, Creative Director and Co-Founder of Tictales.
“Joining Kwalee allows us to concentrate on these passions and specialisms while benefiting from their expertise, particularly in marketing and publishing.”
“It’s a proud moment for us to make Kwalee’s first acquisition, and Tictales is the perfect partner,” said Kwalee CEO David Darling.
“With their successful track record of casual mobile games and ability to tell a compelling story through their games, their ambitions match our own and we’re looking forward to building collective success.”
A legend of the UK games industry who co-founded Codemasters and led the company for 20+ years before establishing Kwalee, Darling is writing yet another chapter in his decades-long gaming career with this acquisition – and he’s not ruling out more deals for companies with complementary skill-sets.
Developers with hypercasual, hybrid-casual or casual mobile games can submit, market-test and get their games published using the Kwalee Publishing Portal. In a process that takes only minutes, all that’s needed are a few 15-second gameplay videos, or a simple prototype: https://www.kwalee.com/publish-with-us/.
Tictales was formed in 2015 to create engaging, entertaining and emotional interactive stories designed for a variety of audiences.
Combining a passion for quality storytelling and years of experience in technology and app development, the team has created and shipped 14 titles in the interactive fiction genre, with themes ranging from romance to medical drama.
The technology and pipeline created by the Tictales team allows them to rapidly provide new content to over 6 million players, keeping up with todayʼs “binge culture”.