Games: Studio appears at university and takes Northeast to games

Games: Studio appears at university and takes Northeast to games

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The Bahian studio Aoca Game Lab is a rare case in the Brazilian game industry. In addition to being away from the country’s main technological hubs, the company is a direct result of one of the few public initiatives to train talent in the area of ​​game development.

“We have, shall we say, this very positive aberration here”, says Filipe Pereira, CEO and founder of the studio.

According to a survey on the sector released on the 7th by Abragames (Brazilian Association of Electronic Games Developers) at the BIG Festival, 43.7% of the 4,116 courses on virtual games in the country are in the Southeast region and 17.3% in the South, almost all (99.7%) are from private institutions.

This inequality results in a greater concentration of companies in the richest states of the country: 57% of Brazilian companies that develop games are in the Southeast region, and more than half of these studios are in São Paulo. In second place comes the South region, with 21% of studios, followed by Northeast (14%), Midwest (6%) and North (3%).

Graduated in history, Filipe started working with games at the Centro de Pesquisa e Desenvolvimento Comunidade Virtuais at Uneb (University of the State of Bahia), which served as an incubator for his company and a starting point for the creation of the university’s virtual games course.

“I started as a researcher and progressed to screenwriter, game designer, project manager, until working with fundraising”, he says.

The opportunity to create the company came in 2016, when Filipe won a bid from the government of Bahia to create a game about the Canudos War. The result of this work can be seen in the game “Arida: Backland’s Awakening”, released in 2019 for PC and two weeks ago for Android.

The game, which mixes elements of exploration and survival, takes place at the end of the 19th century and tells the story of Cícera, a black girl who, after the death of her grandfather, finds herself alone in the backlands of Bahia and decides to go to Canudos in search of what left of his family.

The studio is now working on the console versions of the game and the continuation of Cicera’s story. The plan is to release “Árida 2: Rise of the Brave” next year.

Filipe says that his biggest difficulty was finding qualified labor to help in the development of games. Even with the help of former colleagues from the research group, he had to look for talent in other areas.

“Like my case, which I come from history, there are many people here. Theater people who are working with games and in many other areas”, he says.

Despite being aggravated for Filipe’s case, the shortage of manpower is one of the main problems of the virtual gaming industry in Brazil as a whole.

“We have hundreds of vacancies for qualified workers open, from studios that are in need of people in the country. We need to increase education points in the gaming area. There are more than 4,000 courses, but most are private, and they are not being enough to supply the demand”, says Renato Terra, president of Abragames.

A greater and more diverse supply of labor can lead to a greater and more diverse range of themes present in games developed in the country, as shown by the case of Aoca Game Lab.

“The great motivation we have is to see ourselves more in the media we play”, says Filipe.


game tip, new or old, for you to test

Relic Hunters: Rebels

The game from Brazilian studio Rogue Snail ended up being left out of the list of BIG Festival highlights published in the last newsletter, but only because this great shooter had already won my heart even before the festival. The game has a frenetic pace, ideal for when you only have a few minutes to kill in a quick game. The first game in the “Relic Hunters” franchise for mobile devices is available for free to Netflix subscribers on Android and iOS.


news, launches, business and what else matters

  • Electronic Arts will include sexual orientation options for character building in “The Sims 4”. With this, players will be able to choose whether they want to relate romantically or sexually to characters of different genders and choose whether their character will be able to change their sexual orientation throughout the game.
  • EA also announced details about the “Skate 3” sequel. The new sports game will be called “Skate.” (just like that, with a period), it will be free and will include microtransactions. The company however promises that the items sold will be cosmetic only and that the game will not include “loot boxes”.
  • Nintendo announced the release later this year of a second Kirby game for the Switch. “Kirby’s Dream Buffet” will be a multiplayer game in the style of “Fall Guys”, in which players compete in races in an arena full of traps and obstacles.
  • For fans of more adult games, the Japanese company has announced the release date of “Bayonetta 3”. The game in the franchise known for its unbridled action and sensual protagonist will arrive on Switch on October 28.
  • The PlayStation Plus subscription service will receive a new batch of games in July. Among the novelties are “Final Fantasy 7 Remake”, “Marvel’s Avengers” and “Stray”, which arrives on the service on the same day of launch, as well as games from the “Assassin’s Creed” and “Saints Row” series.
  • The word game “Wordle” will get a board version. The news was announced by The New York Times, the game’s rights holder, which will launch the product in partnership with Hasbro. “Wordle: The Party Game” hits stores in the US in October.


games that will be released in the next few days and promotions that are worth it

July 19

“The Dusk Falls”: BRL 119 (PC), BRL 169.95 (Xbox One/X/S)

“Stray”: BRL 57.41 (PC), price not available* (PS 4/5)

“Endling – Extinction is Forever”: BRL 52.19 (PC), BRL 139.95 (Xbox One), BRL 149.50 (PS 4), price not available (Switch)

July 21

“Bright Memory: Infinite”: BRL 74.95 (Switch), price not available (Xbox X/S, PS 5)

“Coromon”: BRL 101.95 (Switch)

July 22

“Live A Live”: BRL 249 (Switch)

*Available on PlayStation Plus Extra

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