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Evony’s Rise: Q&A with VP Benjamin Gifford

When it comes to war strategy games, the series is no stranger to experienced players. Since its release in 2016 by the ambitious professional game development team, , the game has gained fame and attracted players from around the world to participate in it, achieving remarkable download numbers and revenue.

Evony has shown remarkable growth from January to August 2023, as per the company's latest data. During this period, the game achieved 24.9 million new downloads worldwide, resulting in an impressive revenue of $216.8 million. The U.S. market played a crucial role in this success, contributing nearly 3.9 million new downloads and generating $126.6 million in revenue. This signifies that the U.S. market accounted for 15.5% of the total new downloads and an impressive 58.4% of the new revenue. These numbers highlight the significant impact and popularity of Evony in the gaming industry.

The company's co-founder and CEO, (David Guo), who has over 25 years of software development and project management experience, has played a key role in the success of the game. In this article, we will focus on the insights of Vice Chairman in game development and explore what has made the team so efficient in developing this successful game. Let's take a closer look.

Q. Can you share your journey in the gaming industry so far?

Benjamin: I've been navigating the ever-evolving gaming landscape since 2009, initially delving into IP commercialization within academia and industry. What's really fascinating about Top Games Inc. is our commitment to impactful excellence, rather than superficial perfection. We leverage data analytics to minimize personal biases and set ambitious OKRs to challenge ourselves. The culture, spearheaded by David Guo, is truly a distinguishing feature of our company. It's collaborative and adaptive, creating a ripple effect that elevates the industry standard.

Q. What multifaceted roles do you assume within the company?

Benjamin: I wear several hats—from game design to marketing strategies and problem-solving. We form “Tiger Teams” to tackle specific challenges, providing agile solutions. My advice is four-fold:

  1. Prioritize users to gain and maintain trust.
  2. Act swiftly but responsibly to learn and adapt.
  3. Zero in on solving high-impact problems.
  4. Aim for product excellence over perfection.

It's all about finding the balance between speed, impact, and quality.

Q. Can you share your philosophy on aiming for excellence over perfection in game development?

Benjamin: Absolutely. The gaming industry can often get caught up in the idea of creating a ‘perfect' product. But we at Top Games Inc. believe that aiming for excellence is far more valuable. A product might never be perfect, but it can achieve excellence through constant innovation and improvement.

Q. The organizational structure at Top Games Inc. is quite unique. Can you elaborate on that?

Benjamin: Absolutely. Under the guidance of our CEO David Guo, we operate in a lean, open, and flat structure. Engineers have a direct line, no more than three management levels, to the CEO, ensuring rapid decision-making and information flow. This setup allows each member to have a sense of ownership and responsibility toward maintaining the team's goals and values.

Q. Can you explain how this philosophy is applied in the development process of Evony?

Benjamin: Of course. We encourage our team to avoid a job protection mindset and instead embrace challenges, stretch their capabilities, and continually grow. Our focus is on consistently, methodically, and relentlessly striving for innovation, enabling us to deliver an ever-improving gaming experience to our audience.

Q. What strategies does Top Games Inc. employ to nurture talent?

Benjamin: We're riding the wave of the Internet and the burgeoning metaverse. To stay ahead, we focus on technology insights, data-driven decision-making, and stellar user experiences. Our unique “Exploration Bootcamp,” envisioned by our CEO David Guo, serves as an incubator for creativity and innovation. Through OKRs, we challenge our team to aim beyond their comfort zone, fostering a culture of constructive failure and iterative growth.

Q. As we transition into 2023, what's on the horizon for Top Games Inc.?

Benjamin: We're currently laying the groundwork for the next era of gaming, with an eye toward expanding our cultural impact beyond the bounds of Top Games Inc. David Guo's vision and the culture he's instilled are our guiding lights. The focus for 2023 and beyond is not just game development but shaping the future of interactive entertainment itself.

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In Summary: Evony's Future and Leadership

In this vibrant and boundless world of gaming, the leadership and vision of CEO David Guo and Vice President Benjamin Gifford play a pivotal role. What sets these executives apart is their focus on achieving excellence rather than mere perfection, their emphasis on teamwork and information sharing, and their relentless pursuit of innovation and excellence. It's precisely this style of leadership that allows Top Games Inc. to stand out in a fiercely competitive market.

Evony is more than just a game; it's an ecosystem, a community. Recently, the team has placed special emphasis on co-branding activities, launching a variety of engaging and fresh initiatives for players. These activities not only invigorate the in-game community but also enhance the fun and engagement levels of the game. From rolling out special missions and challenges to incorporating elements related to real-world culture and history, Evony is making strides in diversification and globalization.

David Guo and Benjamin Gifford jointly confirm that they will continue to introduce more captivating and highly innovative games and events in the future. Their goal is to not only meet the existing needs of players but also to anticipate and lead future industry trends, ensuring that Evony and Top Games Inc. are always at the forefront of the industry. In short, under the guidance of these two exceptional leaders, the future for Evony is filled with endless possibilities and expectations.