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Cyprus plays major role in top-selling video game release

kinx atomic heart

Kinx Gaming, an esports organisation headquartered in Nicosia, Cyprus, played a significant role in the successful launch of the AAA first-person shooter game, Atomic Heart.

The game was developed by Mundfish Studios, based in Paphos, Cyprus, with other studios located globally.

Atomic Heart was published by industry giants 4Divinity and Focus Entertainment, renowned for publishing the Plague Tale and Warhammer series.

Lambros Myriantheas, the CEO of Kinx Gaming, informed the Cyprus Mail that his team effectively managed the playtesting phase of the game, which lasted for a month and consisted of four distinct phases.

Playtesters were recruited through social media advertisements and telephone interviews. Approximately 350 individuals were interviewed, and nearly 3000 valid applications were received from across the island.

The selected playtesters, consisting of approximately 25-30 individuals per session, were provided with meals, coffee, and unlimited energy drinks.

The game was tested for 10 hours a day over a period of three days in secure, enclosed areas equipped with metal detectors and security measures.

During the playtesting phase, players assessed the game while engaging in discussions with the developers. Following each session, play testers were required to complete a detailed questionnaire and provide ratings for the game.

Furthermore, Myriantheas explained that Kinx managed the entire campaign, allowing them to gather sufficient data for the developers to address over 450 errors and micro-bugs within the specified one-month timeframe set by the studio.

kinx atomic heart 2
Playtesters at work

“While Cyprus may be a small gaming market, significant advancements are taking place, and these developments are not widely known,” Myriantheas said.

On February 21, 2023, Atomic Heart became available for PC and all gaming consoles. In New York’s Time Square and Taipei’s Main Square in Taiwan, the game’s trailer and marketing were on display.

When Atomic Heart was released, it unexpectedly overtook Hogwarts Legacy to become Steam’s top-selling game for several weeks. Over 17,000 users have given the game very positive evaluations on the platform so far.

In addition, Atomic Heart received an 8 out of 10 rating from IGN, a highly regarded and widely read gaming journal. IGN called Atomic Heart “a highly imaginative, atompunk-inspired game that carries on the legacy of titles like BioShock.”

What is more, IGN also praised the game for having a big impact while being on a smaller scale.

Subsequent to its release, Focus Entertainment reported that the game exceeded its projected sales figures, resulting in record-breaking revenue for the company.

Furthermore, in March of the same year, Mundfish celebrated Atomic Heart amassing over five million players within just three weeks of its launch. However, it should be noted that this figure does not solely represent the game’s sales, as it was made available on Xbox’s Game Pass service to subscribers from day one.

Nonetheless, the game has been a triumph for the studio, and Mundfish has expressed its commitment to providing DLC content, including new areas for exploration, additional storylines, enemies, and free quality-of-life updates.

Myriantheas expressed his lack of surprise regarding Atomic Heart’s enormous success, attributing it to the years of collaboration with talented and diligent developers.

He also expressed his pleasure at being entrusted with managing the crucial pre-release phase of the game.

Additionally, Myriantheas emphasised that “Cyprus has the potential to become a prominent gaming and esports destination”.

“However, due to the government’s absence in supporting the gaming industry, it is gradually shifting its focus to Malta and soon to Saudi Arabia,” he added.

In addition to the success of Atomic Heart, Myriantheas highlighted that Kinx Gaming holds the responsibility of consulting and organising most major gaming-related events in Cyprus.

Indicatively, the organisation has strategic partnerships with renowned tech brands, game publishers, and Red Bull.

Since 2008, Kinx Gaming has been considered a pioneer in the gaming industry and has also managed various online events across Europe. Consequently, Kinx Gaming is considered to be the leader of the esports sector in Cyprus since then.

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