If you spent hours as a kid, or even a teenager planning, strategizing and taking over the world in the game Risk then you’ll be happy to know that two entrepreneurs have started something called WarSocial which is an HTML 5 game based on the fun, and strategy behind the game Risk.
The game was born out of another game that Bill Franceschine and his co-founder Dustin had played but was pretty much abandoned by it’s founder. They put their heads together and expanded that idea to form WarSocial. Now with one game out under their belts they may continue to develop other group played social games using HTML 5.
As a kid I played a lot of Risk, after graduating from Stratego. While many think of big multiplayer online and mobile games being fantasy, or science fiction based, it’s nice to see a startup bringing back a real thinker’s game.
We got a chance to interview Franceschine. Check out the quick interview below:
An HTML5 social game inspired by Risk.
Bill: Serial web entrepreneur with a deep background in poker. There is your hint about what our next game might be!
Dustin: Software engineer who was previously CTO of a venture backed startup.
Distributed team: Bill in California, Dustin in NYC, contractors in Canada and India.
Dustin and I met playing a simliar game. A game the creator has all but abandoned the last few years but which still has a very loyal following who play it many hours per week for years. We both saw the potential for the game to be very popular if done correctly so we decided to do it.
2-7 players can play. Each is randomly assigned lands on a map and those lands are randomly assigned dice. Players attempt to win the whole map by attacking the lands of other players.
We are currently giving away $500 per season (roughly six weeks) in cash prizes to the top ten on our leaderboard.
Our biggest challenge thus far has been onboarding additional programmers. The game is very popular with engineers so recruiting talented developers is easy. Indeed many people reach out to us volunteering to help. However since we use a number of cutting edge technologies onboarding them has been a challenge. They have to setup a Ruby on Rails environment to work with Redis, Heroku, Pusher, HTML5 and in the near future probably also Node.js. This isn’t an easy task.
Continue quickly iterating based on user feedback and growing the community. Bringing the game to Facebook, iOS and Android are also top of mind. Once we are ready we’ll be using our platform to launch additional games as well. We could easily launch most turn-based games.