Kiwi game cracks top 10 on iTunes

SOPHIE SPEER
Last updated 10:16 19/07/2012
Major Mayhem app

OORAH: A screenshot from Major Mayhem, by Antony Blackett and Corie Geerders, which has cracked the US iTunes.

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A game created by a Wellington duo is causing mayhem on international app charts.

Antony Blackett, 26, and Corie Geerders, 32, created the shoot-em-up app Major Mayhem for iPhone. It was so popular that it reached No 9 on the United States iTunes charts, and No 6 on the free games list in the US App Store for iPad.

The pair met while working at Wellington-based game development studio Sidhe, before branching out on their own with their company Rocket Jump.

They spent about seven months creating Major Mayhem, a touch-screen game in which the player fights ninjas in an attempt to save the world - and his girlfriend.

"It's very light-hearted and pretty casual, you can play at your own pace and you don't have to be terribly skilled," Mr Blackett said.

The game was initially released in November for $1. Although they sold about 75,000 copies, they did not make a profit. Since then they have refined the game - making it free, but charging for optional upgrades.

The game was re-released a week ago, was highlighted on the iTunes store, and has been doing a roaring trade. About 300,000 people had downloaded the game, with 5 per cent of those paying for add- ons, Mr Blackett said.

"The top iPhone apps earn $10,000 a day. The problem is it's only lucrative for a very small number of people," he said.

"We definitely hope we can be successful, and in the last four or five days it's pointing at that, but it will be a few months before we really know."

Apple and publisher Adult Swim each take a 30 per cent cut, with the remainder going to Mr Blackett and Mr Geerders. The game is available on iPhone and Android, with Mac on the way.

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- The Dominion Post

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