Season 1, Episode 5

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This is a transcript of one episode of the Samsung Developers Podcast, hosted by and produced by Tony Morelan. All episodes of the podcast can be found at Buzzsprout. A listing of all podcast transcripts can be found here.


Host

Tony Morelan Senior Developer Evangelist, Samsung Developers

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Guests

Aurelien Lavaud Global Associate Director of Business Development, Gameloft / Asphalt 9

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David Bitton, Senior Global Account Manager, Samsung

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In this episode of POW, special guest host David Bitton, Senior Global Account Manager at Samsung, interviews Aurelien Lavaud, Global Associate Director of Business Development at Gameloft. David and Aurelien not only talk about the amazing success of the Asphalt franchise racing game, but also the partnership between Samsung, Gameloft and the Vivendi Group, the global entertainment and media company that owns Gameloft.

Listen to this episode on Buzzsprout.

 

Topics Covered

  • Gameloft history
  • Samsung partnership
  • The Vivendi Group
  • Asphalt 9
  • Licensing
  • Best of Galaxy Store Awards 2019

More about Gameloft & Asphalt 9

Gameloft is a French video game publisher based in Paris. The company operates 19 development studios worldwide, and publishes games with a special focus on the mobile games market.

Try Asphalt 9 for a spin on your Samsung device! Go to https://galaxy.store/920 to download, drive your favorite hyper-car and become a racing legend today!


Transcript

NOTE: Transcripts are provided by an automated service and reviewed by the Samsung Developers web team. Inaccuracies from the transcription process do occur, so please refer to the audio if you are in doubt about the transcript.

 

Tony Morelan 00:02

Hey, I'm Tony Morelan. And this is Pow! Podcast of wisdom from the Samsung Developer Program, where we talk about the latest tech new trends and give insight into all the opportunities available for developers looking to create for Samsung. On today's show, we're doing something a little different. Our interview is with Gameloft, the French gaming company that won the 2019 Best of Galaxy Store Award for best racing game Asphalt 9. David Bitton, Senior Global Account Manager at Samsung sat in as a guest host to chat with Aurelien Lavaud, Global Associate Director of Business Development at Gameloft. David and Aurelien not only talk about the amazing success of the Asphalt franchise, but also the partnership between Samsung, Gameloft and the Vendee Group, the global entertainment and media company that owns Gameloft. And what else is unique about this interview, both David and Aurelien are originally from France, but David currently lives in Korea and Aurelien lives in Vietnam and the music that you're going to hear in this podcast? Well that's all the official music from the soundtrack From Asphalt 9. Enjoy.

David Bitton 01:12

Hello, Welcome to this session. So I'm David Bitton, senior business development manager at Samsung and based in Korea today I'm very excited to have a volunteer from Gameloft, the game company behind the asphalt franchise so Olivia, welcome. Hello, David,

Aurelien Lavaud 01:31

how are you?

David Bitton 01:32

Good. Thank you. Let me start by asking a basic question who is okay yeah

Aurelien Lavaud 01:38

level. I'm already a level global by Director of Business Development gambler. So my daily routine consists in creating and deploying public partnerships with manufacturers all around the world. And what I love in this in this job is such gives me the chance to be at the front line of innovation, discovering new technological trends that I can then use to provide insight to a developer on teams and improve, keep improving your games. So I also used to be on VR on the sides two years ago, you Aflac. I took part in the development of some iconic titles, such as the revamped versions of snake or tea trees. So I try to always have this double heart with the understanding of technical feasibility within the business model, the business directions we want to implement. On a more personal level, I'm fortunate to be based in Vietnam, in Southeast Asia, very beautiful new age, and I will I highly recommend to visit if you're into hiking, or kayaking me to an amazing wildlife. So that's what I'm trying to do enjoy as much as I can on my feet. Hi.

David Bitton 02:48

Yeah, that sounds exciting, especially because I'm based in Korea. So that's not that that's far. So yeah, that could be a great a great opportunity. Can you talk a little bit more about the history of Gameloft?

Aurelien Lavaud 03:04

Certainly. So gamma was created in 2000, with a patient for games and the desire to bring them to even more pay on the war. By bringing the wonders of games to mobile devices, we have creating a one new market that became 20 years later, the biggest market in gaming. So what we did over the years was shipping companies to be able to deliver this vision. And today we are 4600 employees, over 17 developers to throw the war and where people are working hard to bring new games to a wide range of devices with ad hoc or patient

David Bitton 03:46

that that's great. You said that you have 17 development studios around the world. So that's quite big, more than 4000 employees and you also have a very large game portfolio. So, again last Is it like the more games, the better?

Aurelien Lavaud 04:04

Well, I talk all we want everyone to play. And we believe there's a different game for everyone. So no matter the device, language, the region or the general, we try to make it available. So having a very powerful you come with logic and we provide for brain wide range of different experiences for a wide range of people preferences.

David Bitton 04:30

Okay. Just to dive a little bit more into your, into this Samsung partnership out of curiosity, how long have you been working with Samsung as a partner? And how did that start? Because I guess, from what I know, that's, that's quite a long-time partnership here that we are talking about.

Aurelien Lavaud 04:51

Yes, we have been working with them for more than 15 years. Wow. So we started on the feature phones. At the time Java devices were King Dennis pink starting to pick up on truth 2010 with project on the first something series, and we had the asphalt WCAG series that we signed that was memorable, made a lot of noise. And later on in 2019, we are refreshed and we started our collaboration with another big name. Game of catalog with yes one nine on the Galaxy app store that was off a long list of games coming.

David Bitton 05:34

as we as we know game lost is also a part of the of the Vivendi group which is a global entertainment and media company. So how do you see opportunities and synergies not only internally within your different business units and sister companies but also externally with your partnership with Samsung.

Aurelien Lavaud 05:59

We have already been Developing great synergies, especially with kind of priests we developed by putting on a run. And we walked into with Universal Music on the fallout by integrating in as well I, I see on some of the older partnerships like Disney, we were working with them before prior to the acquisition

David Bitton 06:20

and speaking of these of these games, you mentioned that Disney for example. What are the games currently included in the in the partnership does the first question and second question for you would be what were the criteria to include them in the in the partnership?

Aurelien Lavaud 06:39

Usually we started with Asphalt 9 games. It was perfect timing. Because we are now celebrating the 15th birthday of our series. Happy birthday. Thank you. So I will introduce later you can reach Asphalt 9 Facebook page or we also have a dedicated website as www.asphalt9.com where you can discover everything about just full series along these 15 years. And you can enjoy some, some gift that can take part to some to some get involved into the hype game and

David Bitton 07:23

I will certainly do that. Yeah,

Aurelien Lavaud 07:24

thank you for furthering the discussion. After asphalt nine we started working on dragon manual agents together at Disney Magic Kingdom and legally it wasn't necessary. Great. Now we are also working on some stuff too. And we are planning to release in next month on the Samsung Galaxy App Store.

David Bitton 07:46

Great, great so more and more games are coming but if we if we want to get a little bit more specifics on the Asphalt 9 because there was a second of the

Aurelien Lavaud 07:58

game here. Asphalt 9 offers like a fully licensed cars. So initially How much time did it take for us for asphalt nine to team to convince the most prestigious brands to join the game to create enough momentum to stop the engine? No pun intended. So yeah, we've been working with car manufacturer for more than 15 years now. So the process was asphalt nine was actually quite smooth, because we had already a lot of a lot of partners on board. What happened is that we present into game to twitch partner and we are all very excited to be part of the adventure. So we got already all most of most of all, car manufacturers.

David Bitton 08:48

some early discussion to launching a model from a new car manufacturer earlier, how long does it usually take to incorporate this discard into the into the game

Aurelien Lavaud 09:00

While DVD it will already depend licensor for the partners we already work with, it's pretty fast, it's a human but on the partner we want the new partners that we want to integrate into games to work with us we need to pitch the game first and then create some legal contracts. And we are more on We own a few months up to one year

David Bitton 09:29

and now that asphault nine is celebrating its 15th birthday so that's kind of nice teenager and is getting also more popular. Do car manufacturers also promote a sold night in their own channels?

Aurelien Lavaud 09:45

Yeah, I put is a very interesting that they do. We recently launched into the coming season and license or use these two promos, every kid on their social network. Oh great. Great on top of that, with longtime relationship with Bree to them. We are often walking in close partnership to have some unique experience to our users. So as an example, we collaborated recently with Lamborghini. So top players could be invited in Lamborghini HQ in Italy.

David Bitton 10:20

I think there was a mistake here because I didn't get invited. So I would love to maybe to play a little bit more on the on assaulter. So,

Aurelien Lavaud 10:31

yes, train a train half an hour and you may be the next one.

David Bitton 10:35

Okay, okay. So I will play and repeat. Just for a forum. Actually, the Samsung ran many asphault nine tournaments included, including in the Netherlands, Korea, the us at our annual developer conference in South Africa as well when usually Trying to promote the launch of new devices like Galaxy Note 10, for example, or when running some events like galaxy studio around the world. So thanks to them to the customization of this publicly available AP can gain. We could we could offer a unique experience to our users. So I guess that the different teams involved the there must have had some extra hours of developing testing and as we said, playing as well right. In the tribe. We have been putting a lot of work on this live demo units, give you some numbers. We are looking at around 300 hours of testing. Wow. So that was heavy, but I needed to make sure all the products were top notch. Yeah. And our latest developer conference in the in the US, you went on stage to receive a best of a world in the in the racing category for us Asphalt 9. So what was your feeling regarding this, this event

Aurelien Lavaud 12:16

that we're feeling was amazing. I mean from via reception or via word to the game booth that was welcoming a huge crowd of people eager to play asphault nine on the lattice Samsung Galaxy fold. It was three more I believe in

David Bitton 12:33

and in speaking of galaxy fold, actually, you also on Book Two to create a customized version of the game for galaxy fold. That that would support app continuity. So from your side, partner perspective, what were the lessons learned there during this, this approach and the development?

Aurelien Lavaud 12:57

I think this project was particular interesting because quilted was new for the team they had never been walking on, on this feature. So what they were discovering, and they were eating, they were eating some wood blocks. So at some points, they weren't progressing anymore. And that's where they started, we started to connect or different developers seem together with your UI on the team at Samsung. And we were able to overcome to overcome the difficulties that both teams were working together to deliver our very nice products and to make sure that we can keep this continuity and move from one screen to another two tablets off when we opened it to the device, without any interruption without any change. So it was quite collaboration and we learned a lot from this.

David Bitton 13:52

Let's switch gears here and admit and let's talk about the future if I if I may. So 90s is right now in full, full speed again, happy birthday assault without revealing any trade secrets, I was wondering what would trigger the release of assault then? Would that be like a new game engine on which you're working on or some kind of revolutionary user experience? Could you could you share a little bit more about that?

Aurelien Lavaud 14:26

Should they so I will probably disappoint everybody but at the moment we are not planning to release something yet. There's a reason behind is that there are a lot of work to do on asphault nine so as for nine I've never been so successful. There are plenty of new features and contents we are planning to offer on asphault nine. So objective is really to prove us on nine first, to focus on innovation to make sure we can integrate new features new contents, new cars, new tracks to Deliver perfect and expanse of course will promote ensuring new technologies as well and there will be integrated into us online. But no vision at the moment for us have felt any relief because we still have so much work to do and

David Bitton 15:14

understood. So, as you as you mentioned, you said that you regularly add content you features So, would you have any exciting location coming up soon for as for nine

Aurelien Lavaud 15:28

bring a new location is always a very important part of the game because it helps us to rediscover the game. Unfortunately, I will not be able to deliver any information in Wales next tracks will be what I can do is to invite user to general on a Facebook page where we are trying to keep the hype to make the user guess what is the next track so you can take parts to the discussion, you can get involved on the Facebook page. You will get more insights step by step on the new tracks we are planning to release. Okay? Okay. The other thing I can tell is that we also have this this content creator opportunity. So you can go on www.asphaultnine.com/creators and he, you can take part into the content creation show interested so you can get more insight on where the game is heading you can get more involved into the game. Okay, okay, a way to keep the hype going.

David Bitton 16:30

Your team I mean, the asphalt 19

Aurelien Lavaud 16:34

as a unique expertise in racing, modeling cause even experiencing crashes, for example. So, actually, I have two questions here is their first any plan to leverage this expertise for a new racing game from the same team does the first question and second question more generally, how much of transferable skills Feels a dedicated studio team can have when it comes to creating games. Indeed, we have some studios that are specialized in different games. But overall, there's a lot of shared knowledge and synergies between the different teams. So, our promise to you is the same for you or at company level. We work on different types of titles, different types of channels and different for different audiences. But based on the resources leads based on the experience of the team, we will be able to be flexible and to bring people to support us our team to allocate resources differently on the project that we need needs to last. So we always try to develop or games or team and grow people to make sure they can, they can move to a different type of projects to a difference a different type of develop different type of skills and they can Yeah.

David Bitton 18:01

Okay, Okay great, great. Going back to this partnership with Samsung, any exciting plan you would like to develop in the, in the future with a Samsung any, any specific any specific ideas that you that you would have to grow to grow the business

Aurelien Lavaud 18:18

actually we are very open and now since we started with the partnership we were really impressed with all the innovations. You guys we are bringing so we could be looking at other new technologies from artificial intelligence to augmented reality virtual reality cloud gaming. We are going to explore it a bit everything and we just probably need the time to see what kind of walk and how we can do this together.

David Bitton 18:54

Exciting just between you and me if you will to own one of these hyper cars that that are available in asphalt nine if you if you don't have the already, which one? Would it be? Would you have any preference for a specific hyper car? And second question, where would you drive this car?

Aurelien Lavaud 19:17

Unfortunately, I do not have any of these cats. I wish I did. I wish I do. But no, I have a sweet spot for the cats. Sharon. I would I think it would be quite nice to drive it on the Italian coast. So we could have a clever, nice, nice view on the Mediterranean Sea and enjoy the ride.

David Bitton 19:44

Okay, this this sounds nice. Yeah. Just to just to finish here with a last question. We do have any closing comments for developers out there?

Aurelien Lavaud 19:57

Yes. As a matter of fact. I have so we were very happy with sort of the experience we do guys is I think it's a very good experience to walk with Samsung in the way that you've always been super supportive. So I was about studying when we were developing dual screen, the team was the wizard team was hitting some roadblocks and, and in both for the teams working together, to fix everything, and to bring things forward. We were also quite impressed with all those new features and new technologies you are developing on your recent models. And for us, give us a way to improve the game experience for the user to provide to users new features, and to deliver a more memorable game experience.

David Bitton 20:48

Okay, yeah. So, two things that are here for to do thank you first. Happy Birthday again to the asphalt franchise. And second, thanks. Thank you for your time. Again. I hope we could we could shed some light on our partnership between Samsung and again last and also get developers excited. So earlier Thank you. Thank you again for your time.

Aurelien Lavaud 21:16

Thank you very much for the invitation on this podcast was very, very interesting and I really hope we can develop new technologies and develop organs further on Samsung devices.


Outro 21:30 Looking to start creating for Samsung, download the latest tools to code your next app, or get software for designing apps without coding at all. Sell your apps to the world on the Samsung Galaxy store. Check out www.developersamsung.com today and start your journey with Samsung. The Pow! Podcast is brought to you by the Samsung Developer Program and produced by Tony Morelan.