Finnish Zombie Specialist Wins Deal to Build ‘Blade Runner’ Game

  • Next Games to develop mobile title based on sci-fi adventure
  • Sequel to Ridley Scott’s classic set to premiere in October

Finland’s Next Games Oyj won a deal to make the mobile game for the new sequel to Ridley Scott’s “Blade Runner,” a boon for the developer seeking to become the latest gaming success to emerge from the Nordic country.

The small publisher, known for its game based on the AMC TV-series “The Walking Dead,” said Wednesday that it struck an agreement with Alcon Entertainment, which is producing the movie. “Blade Runner 2049,” the big-budget follow-up to Scott’s 1982 sci-fi classic, will star Ryan Gosling and Harrison Ford and is set to open in October.

“We are thrilled to work on ‘Blade Runner,’ a true pop culture icon,” Next Games Chief Executive Officer Teemu Huuhtanen said in a statement. “We are determined to deliver on Blade Runner’s unique themes and vision of the future.”

Next Games is trying to emulate Finnish game standouts such as Rovio Entertainment Oy, of Angry Birds fame, and Supercell Oy, maker of Clash of Clans and Hay Day. Supercell was bought last year by a consortium led by China’s largest internet company, Tencent Holdings Ltd. The deal valued Supercell at about $10.2 billion, dwarfing Next Games’ $160 million market cap.

Huuhtanen’s company, which made its stock-market debut on Helsinki’s First North exchange in March, has opted to develop games based on licensed brands, rather than creating concepts from scratch as its better-known Finnish peers. The company, which saw revenue from its Walking Dead game double in the most recent quarter, aims to launch at least one game a year starting in 2018.

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