Might and Magic and Heroes of Might and Magic creator starts new mobile game studio

Jon Van Caneghem, the legendary game designer behind Might and Magic and Heroes of Might and Magic, has a new game company – VC Mobile Entertainment (VCME).  As Founder and CEO, of VC Mobile Entertainment, Van Caneghem and his senior team have been working in stealth mode in West LA since 2014.  Backed by a Series A round of $4.5 million from Tencent and Pacific Sky Investments, Jon and VCME  are now on a mission to bring magical game designs to mobile devices, and he outlines his plans for us in an interview with Gaming Business Review.

On Starting VCME

Jon:VCMedia “Mobile has been growing enormously the last couple of years and I see it as the next frontier for game design and development. It is kind of a renaissance for game development. Never before in the history of gaming could we reach so many people so easily, and so many new gamers. It’s just very exciting to me as a game maker and company builder.

We saw an opportunity about a year ago. After leaving EA I got together with some colleagues here and we started prototyping and thinking about all the products we wanted to build. We decided on one and started building it.”

 

Game Focus

Jon: “Initially, our first game is much more of a Western focus but it is in a category that I’m hoping will be worldwide. We really aren’t talking too much yet about the upcoming games. A lot of my previous games, especially the Hero series was worldwide hit and I want to continue that focus – games made in the West but have the potential to be a worldwide hit regardless of territory. We’ve seen some amazing mobile games come to market in the past few years, but we also see a lot of areas where the gameplay is ripe for new innovation.”

The VCME Team

Jon: “The team is made up of a lot of senior people, many or most of whom I’ve worked with before at Electronic Arts and some as far back as New World twenty years ago. They have lots of experience from PC, to console, to online games and MMRPGs, and across the board we have a team of expert game developers. They are all people I like and enjoy working with. It is really important to have a people you work well with, especially in a creative environment. The team is a total of 16 senior people, and I like it is back to hands-on iteration, and not the big monstrosities with teams of several hundred people.”

With VCME, Van Caneghem has gathered a number of highly skilled and experienced colleagues from his past ventures to help in the development of VCME’s first title and in building a world-class mobile publisher. The founding five members of the team each possess over 20 years of experience in game creation, and have developed hundreds of titles for some of the largest and most influential game studios and publishers in the industry, including Activision, Disney Interactive, Electronic Arts, NCSoft, Nexon, New World Computing, Origin Systems, Sierra Online, and Trion Worlds.

Prior to founding VCME, Van Caneghem led multiple internal studios at Electronic Arts, including the Command & Conquer franchise.  Before that he co-founded Trion Worlds, an independent developer and publisher of massively multiplayer games.  Van Caneghem is best known for founding New World Computing, a publisher and developer of PC and console games, and designing and developing a number of best-selling strategy and role-playing titles, including the award-winning Might and Magic and Heroes of Might and Magic series.  New World Computing successfully exited to 3DO, a console publisher founded by Trip Hawkins. Today, Van Caneghem is bringing his deep game design and development experience, his entrepreneurial skills, and his passion to his latest gaming venture.

Investment

Jon: “I was looking for more of a strategic partner rather than just an investor/VC. I’ve known Tencent for a number of years and wound up doing a deal with them and we are really excited about that partnership, especially going into the mobile space. They bring a lot of knowledge and expertise, especially for the Chinese market. With the assistance of our partners and the experience of our talented team we will explore those new areas and build a new generation of mobile games for phones and tablets. Stay tuned for more information on our upcoming title.”

VC Mobile Entertainment (VCME) received a Series A investment round totaling $4.5m that included investments from Tencent and Pacific Sky Investments. The new Los Angeles-based development and publishing company is currently developing its first mobile title, which it will publish in 2015. The company is currently looking for talented engineers, developers, artists, marketing, monetization and publishing talent to join its team.

For more information, visit www.vcmobile.net.