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There’s something soothingly addictive about spinning a Pirate Kings wheel. That might be why this casual game, where your progress is pretty much dependent on your luck, has become a top grossing adventure game in 12 countries, and an overall top grossing app in two. Developer Jelly Button Games estimates it has gone completely viral in approximately six countries.
Pirate Kings was just taking off when we first wrote about it and it hasn’t slowed down since then. The Israel-developed game, available for Android, iOS, and browser, currently stands at 980,000 daily active users (DAU) and hopes to reach a million by next week. On top of 450,000 DAU in Malaysia and 100,000 in comparatively smaller Singapore, Pirate Kings has also started to see growth in Thailand and the Philippines.
While current growth efforts are focused on the US and Southeast Asia, developer Jelly Button will soon move on to leading countries in Europe and the Asia Pacific, like France, Germany, and Italy among others, as well as Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, Australia, and more.
Unsurprisingly, this unique new game isn’t the work of fledgling game developers, though the company is very young, with its oldest staff being just 32. Jelly Button Games is made up of “20 experienced gaming and product unicorns,” five of whom are founders. It is led by co-CEOs Mor Shani and Ron Saranga, and has raised US$1.5 million from Kaedan Capital, a VC that is based in Israel.
It’s a very simple Facebook game that requires you to spin a wheel to earn gold, pick up defensive bubbles, and attack other players. But it’s also a one-button game with a bit more depth than your usual Flappy Bird clone. With the riches you earn from the wheel, you can build up your own island.
You don’t get many options by way of customization: there are just five different objects that can be placed on your island as targets for attackers, and these can be upgraded just five times. Occasionally, your wheel spin will net you more spins, or you’ll be able to play a mini guessing game and steal all the money from an unfortunate player who has been selected at random by the game.
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