Exclusive: Could Thoopid be the Rovio of Africa with upcoming Snailboy game?

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High-quality games are not something you readily associate with Africa or South Africa’s gaming scene. Sure there are a lot of gamers, and they all love to play high-quality titles, but it’s a young and small scene on the development side.

A startup based in Cape Town, Thoopid, is out to change all of that with its upcoming mobile game Snailboy, a game so beautifully animated, brimming with life and character, we’d go so far as to call it the Angry Birds of Africa, not least because Snailboy controls similarly to Angry Birds’ ‘catapult’ mechanic.

Snailboy is a simple enough concept: you play as a snail who has lost his shell — in fact it wasn’t lost, but stolen by the evil Shadow Gang — across over 40 puzzling levels in which you must jump, slide and slap Snailboy on his way to getting it back.

Thoopid has only been around since January 2013, but founders David Moffatt, Mark Tomlinson, Simon Spreckly, Larry Katz and Rw Liebenberg have achieved a huge amount in the last six months, practically taking Snailboy from concept to market-ready in that time.

Thoopid has been self-funded by the shareholders, and has plans to get Snailboy out on iOS, Android and even the open-source OUYA console using its newly announced Free The Games Fund.

Snailboy stands out, first and foremost, for its amazing HD graphics, but Thoopid told Ventureburn that its focus is on the entire gaming experience.

“Our biggest hope with Snailboy is to deliver our Character [Snailboy] and the uniquely designed levels to as many people across the world. Not just because it will allow us to create games for many years to come, but also because he (Snailboy) is just such a nice guy,” said the company.

Snailboy has thoroughly impressed us so from what we’ve seen, and if the gameplay matches up to the design elements of the game, we are confident Snailboy could win the hearts of local and international fans worldwide, just as Angry Birds did over the last few years.

Snailboy is due out on iOS (first) and Android (second) in September this year.

For Cape Town supporters, Thoopid will be presenting Snailboy at the MakeGamesSA Community Night on 31 July, you can see more details here.

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