Scaling Up The ‘Best Fiends’ Experience
2018 — Our Biggest Year to Date
Today we are excited to launch our fifth animated short, ‘Howie’s Gift’. This latest animation tells the story of one of our most popular characters, Howie, a wizard lizard, who also has a rather delectable English accent.
I auditioned for the part of Howie, but instead it went to the talented voice actor Maurice LaMarche (Zootopia, Futurama, Pinky and the Brain). Here’s the animation, also available today inside the Best Fiends game.
This fifth short premieres on the heels of our four previous Best Fiends shorts and associated videos, which, in total, have a combined 20 million+ views and counting. Our community is amazing, and we will continue to invest in and engage our following of over 3 million people across all social platforms, in addition to over 1.5M daily players in our original game.
What’s special about our approach is that because of the direct connection with the audience, we get to tie our animations into in-game events and back into our marketing, which creates a thoughtful Best Fiends experience.
What began with a mobile game developed by a team of 12 people that had just 80 levels in 2014, is starting to develop into a broader entertainment franchise. This past year, we released two more animated shorts, Fort of Hard Knocks and Baby Slug’s Big Day Out, created a new format called ‘The Best Best Fiends Show’ which shares all the latest news from our world, and opened an online store, the Best Fiends Shop. Each bring the Best Fiends brand to life in a fun and original way beyond the games.
That said, in 2018 we really upped the level of the Best Fiends game experience. Our players tried to solve over 5 billion puzzle levels, spent over 400 million hours inside the game, and collected just under 100 million Fiends! We now have over 3,000 levels inside the game, as we’ve continued to meet the demands of our players!
In 2018, our focus on live operations (running the game as a live service), enabled us to add more events, levels, challenges and characters. And as the game experience was enhanced, we expanded to a wider audience by testing and growing new marketing channels.
The expansion of the Best Fiends franchise in 2018 is exemplified well by our growth metrics. Our Q4 2018 was our largest quarter to date, bringing in over $22 million in revenue. We generated a profitable $69 million in 2018, growing 65% year over year. Since launch, the Best Fiends franchise has driven $175 million of gross revenue, and is currently operating at the highest run rate it’s ever been.
We’ve got a fantastic team of 75 people split between Helsinki and Los Angeles, and we work hard to infuse our company culture with a focus on our creative spirit. Seriously has always strived to differentiate itself by developing intellectual properties at the same quality level as an Illumination, a Pixar or a Netflix. In a world of unlimited entertainment choices, it’s the brands that cut through.
Our creative work has allowed the Best Fiends franchise to unfold in a unique way, as exemplified by our latest animation release. Stay tuned for all that’s to come this year as we work to fulfill our vision of creating entertainment franchises that have the potential to endure for decades. We’ve built a great foundation and 2019 will be our most exciting year yet!