Nigeria Aims To Dominate African Video Game Industry

Written by Ann Brown

From Business Day

It’s a common enough scenario in Nigeria and across Africa: how to get rid of pesky mosquitoes whose buzzing disturbs sleep and whose bites can carry malaria and other diseases.

Two Nigerian start-ups have tapped this — and other aspects and quirks of daily life in Africa — to create online and smartphone video games that are winning fans around the world.

It’s easy to see why Mosquito Smasher — which has earned comparisons to Angry Birds, the worldwide mobile app success of recent years — might be a hit.

The graphics are simple, the aim clear and the reward immediate: squash as many of the blood-sucking parasites as possible under your thumb with a satisfying “Splat!” Another, the highly popular Okada Ride, has players guide a motorcycle-taxi driver around roadside street vendors, roadblocks and police in the notorious traffic of Lagos, a sprawling metropolis of nearly 20-million people.

“What I like about Nigerian video games, it’s one, the local content, because it tends to give you that everyday feel,” said Chucks Olloh, 32, a big fan.

Read more atBusiness Day