It's been 10 years since a group of 8 ambitious entrepreneurs set out to form Outfit7. Initially a small venture focusing on the development of casual mobile games, Outfit7 has since become a global multimedia company operating on the highest level of the entertainment industry.
It's been a long journey, but Outfit7, best known for its virtual pet games, is stronger than ever. We managed to catch up with Chief Creative Officer Boris Dolenc earlier this year while at the company's 10-year anniversary event in Barcelona where we talked about Outfit7's past, present, and plans for the future.
On the evolution of the Talking Tom games:
“The first big evolution [from the original Talking Tom games] was My Talking Tom. You would take care of the cat and you really start to get an emotional attachment to the character. From there on, we had a lot of discussion on what kind of game mechanics would suit our audience. We had many trials and did many things. And the miracle happened with Talking Tom Gold Run. We really used the strengths of the virtual pet games and were able to create a strong emotional attachment from the user to the game. We saw what the audience really loves to get: Immersive fun. That's what they love about it. They want to be entertained, they want to have fun, and they want to use their skills. Right now, we are developing many different ideas that would follow this logic.”
“We started [Talking Tom and Friends] in a very agile way. We have to go fast, and we have to release something. Let's create and learn while doing it. The show evolved over that phase, and the main thing now is we say: What are we doing? Why are we doing this episode? What do we want to tell with this episode? Why does this episode deserve to be done? [The episodes often have] a satirical point, a great message, a message that somebody can learn something from in a different way. We've talked about many different things: elections, addiction, everything – but we do it in a way that kids can understand. I think that's when the show gets a purpose.”
On the team's approach to its creative output:
“In the company, there are a bunch of passionate people that just want to make some good stuff. The business side always came as a bit of a second thing for us. The team who is creating these great, amazing products has a lot of passion; there's a lot of creativity involved here. We had the same approach to the show (Talking Tom and Friends) as we did with the games. You see a difference between creator-driven shows and business-driven shows. We didn't sacrifice on the quality. We have an amazing writers team in LA, an amazing bunch of people coming from many different well-known shows, we have a great cast (Tom Kenny, Colin Hanks), and we just went all in. Quality always comes first for us. Over the years, we saw that the audience actually noticed that.”
On the upcoming feature film adaptation:
“We are now in the script stage. We have some amazing writers on the project. We've been figuring out what kind of movie we want to do. What should it look like? It should have a really strong story. The story should come first, right? Do we have a story that we want to tell with all the meanings we want to express? And then, can our brand play a part of it?”
We now also know of two new games Outfit7 has in development. One of these is a sizeable advancement of the My Talking Tom virtual pet games. The other is a team-based arena game which is totally unlike anything we've seen from Outfit7 before. For more info on the upcoming games and the latest character entering the Talking Tom cast, Talking Becca, best check out our extended news piece.