Recognizing the talents of its developer community that builds highly competitive game experiences for everyone - Skillz (NYSE: SKLZ), the leading mobile games platform bringing fair, fun and meaningful competition to players worldwide, today announced the first-ever “Developer of the Year” is Play Mechanix. The Chicago-based developer of the legendary Big Buck Hunter franchise that launched the Big Buck Hunter: Marksman mobile game version exclusively on Skillz’ platform last fall, is being recognized by Skillz for their achievement as the standout developer partner of 2021, which was revealed today at the 36th Annual Game Developer Conference (GDC) in San Francisco, California.
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Chicago-based Play Mechanix Named the Recipient of Skillz' "Developer of the Year" Award for 2021 at the Game Developers Conference (GDC) (Graphic: Business Wire)
“Developers are the heart and soul of the Skillz platform, so it’s a pleasure to honor Play Mechanix as the recipient of Skillz’ first ‘Developer of the Year’ Award,” said Andrew Paradise, CEO of Skillz. “We are delighted by the dedication shown by their entire development team. From introducing one of last year’s fastest rising titles on the Skillz platform that ranked No. 1 in the sports category on the Apple App Store within its first week of release, to now becoming a finalist in the NFL & Skillz Game Developer Challenge, Play Mechanix serves as a stellar example for other developers seeking to build multi-million dollar games on Skillz’ platform. We look forward to continuing our prosperous relationship together in 2022 and for years to come.”
Play Mechanix’s Journey with Skillz
Play Mechanix’s partnership with Skillz began in 2020, with an eye on bringing its iconic Big Buck Hunter arcade franchise to a massively growing mobile gaming fan base, leveraging Skillz’ competitive mobile games platform. Skillz powers over two billion tournaments each year. This was a perfect match given the heritage behind Big Buck Hunter, whose wildly popular first-person shooter game has enticed fans with live, head-to-head arcade competition for over 20 years. Play Mechanix’s next-generation mobile game, Big Buck Hunter: Marksman inaugurated the first-person shooter game genre on Skillz’ platform. Skillz made community and competition - something Play Mechanix has been successfully doing for years in the traditional games space - an enticing new business strategy for Play Mechanix within the thriving mobile games market. The opportunity to monetize and grow its blockbuster franchise through competition on Skillz’ platform has opened doors to a whole new fan base of players unimaginable before. Play Mechanix has been expanding its relationship with Skillz, continuing to iterate upon its popular hunting title and enhance the player experience. They are launching new animals to target, and introducing a new sync version utilizing Skillz’ integration with Photon Engine from partner Exit Games for synchronous multi-player gaming, which aims to boost player engagement and retention.
“Skillz’ expertise in the mobile games industry, guiding us through the entire development process and helping nurture our Big Buck Hunter: Marksman mobile game to life in such a short amount of time has been incredible,” said George Petro, President of Play Mechanix. “There is no other platform out there that matches Skillz’ triple-threat ability to enable developers to bring their games to life, create new games partnering with some of the most recognizable branded IP and build games that monetize for a built-in mobile gaming audience that thrives on competition.”
Other developer nominees considered for the Skillz 2021 “Developer of the Year” award included BoomBit, developer of the Skillz-powered Dart Tournament mobile game and etermax, creators of Trivia Crack Payday.
Skillz Spotlights Play Mechanix at GDC 2022
Skillz will be hosting a GDC speaking panel session on March 23, 12:30-1:30pm, titled “Building the Future of Competition”. Join panel speakers Andrew Paradise, CEO of Skillz; George Petro, President of Play Mechanix; and Mark Val, Head of Growth at Photon Engine, who will highlight the successes and opportunities for developers to monetize their games through competition.
Also on display at Skillz (Booth #S749 South Hall) during GDC, will be a series of spotlight videos capturing Play Mechanix’s partnership with Skillz. To watch the spotlight videos and Skillz speaking panel session, all content will be posted live via Skillz’ GDC Virtual Booth.
About Skillz Inc.
Skillz is the leading mobile games platform that connects players in fair, fun, and meaningful competition. The Skillz platform helps developers build multi-million dollar franchises by enabling social competition in their games. Leveraging its patented technology, Skillz hosts billions of casual esports tournaments for millions of mobile players worldwide, and distributes millions in prizes each month. Skillz has earned recognition as one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies, CNBC’s Disruptor 50, Forbes’ Next Billion-Dollar Startups, and the number-one fastest-growing company in America on the Inc. 5000. www.skillz.com
About Play Mechanix, Inc.
Founded in 1995 by former Midway designer George Petro, (NARC, Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Revolution X), Play Mechanix is a global leader in the design and development of arcade video games. Merging with Raw Thrills in 2006 to form the top arcade video game manufacturer in the world, Play Mechanix is responsible for hit releases such as the Big Buck Hunter series, Minecraft Dungeons Arcade, Halo: Fireteam Raven, The Walking Dead, Terminator Salvation, Aliens Armageddon, MotoGP, and many, many more.
Source: Skillz, Inc.
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