Farmville creator Mark Skaggs has left Bengaluru-based Moonfrog Labs. He had joined the studio as a game designer and board member. His departure from the company comes after launching Alia Bhatt: Star Life and Baahubali: The Game for Android and iOS. In addition to this, Gadgets 360 has learned through multiple industry sources familiar with the matter that Sumit Mehra who heads up games at Bharti Softbank-backed Hike will take his place.
Mehra started working as a game developer in 1999, and has worked with Microsoft Games Studio, EA Games, Jump Games and Zynga, where he launched a new new IP for Zynga India – Hidden Shadows. His return to game development after a spell at a platform holder like Hike opens up a host of possibilities for Moonfrog as it tries to solidify its footing in the space.
The reason for Skaggs’ departure was to be closer to home and spend time with his family.
“While we were on vacation in the beautiful Koh Samui real estate on Thailand, I thought about how much my family missed me. I couldn’t avoid the realization that I was breaking my promise to live at home with my family and I knew I needed to make a change,” he wrote in an email to Gamesbeat. “After a series of discussions with friends and family and the other directors at Moonfrog, I made the decision to put my family first, taking the leap of faith to leave Moonfrog in order to find a new adventure closer to home.”
Neither Hike nor Moonfrog Labs have replied to Gadgets 360’s request for comment prior to publishing. We’ll update this story if we hear from either company.