Hawke's Bay best place to be for successful game developer


Hawke's Bay game developer Dave Frampton is on a roll. He has had more than 3 million downloads of his iPad/iPhone games Chopper and Chopper 2 and now his latest hit, The Blockheads, achieved 1 million downloads on just its third day of release this month.

His success has allowed him to quit his previous job creating weather graphics and become a game developer full time, moving to Hawke's Bay with his wife and son.

"We love it here after moving from Wellington last year," he said.

"Working for myself and from home means I can live pretty much anywhere. So we spent some time exploring many regions around the country and decided we liked the Hawkes Bay best as a place to live and raise our family. We really love the climate, and it's just a nice size with friendly people and communities. The surf is pretty good, which was a drawcard too."

He said the negatives of being based in Hawke's Bay were also the positives.

"It's always so nice outside that it's hard to stay inside and work. I don't tend to need to meet up with people face-to-face or travel a lot for what I do, and when I do need to travel overseas, it's not really any different from living in Wellington."

He is a self-taught game developer, who decided to "give it a crack" when he was a struggling artist.

The potential for success in his field is vast.

"There are mobile games out there that have had well over 100 million downloads now - and it's still growing rapidly."

He now employs a part-time person to look after the user forums for The Blockheads.

He said his 1-year-old son was too young to give feedback on any games he might develop.

"I love seeing kids play my games though, and always learn a huge amount from them."

- Hawkes Bay Today

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