Games Business Education at Aalto University


During the past decade, the games industry has become one of the hottest and fastest growing industries in the world. With successful companies such as Rovio, Supercell and Remedy, Finland represents the cutting edge of the entire industry. The games sector has grown at an almost 50% pace for several years straight and there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight – quite the opposite!

There are now nearly 300 game studios in Finland employing more than 2000 people with total revenues close to 800 million euros. With the current rate of growth, it is estimated that by 2020 the industry will employ around 8000 people with 2,5 billion euros in total revenues. The total market value of the companies is estimated to be between 10 and 20 billion euros.

Despite the recent successes and the very promising outlook for the future, there are many challenges in the Finnish games industry. Out of the 200+ studios only around 10-15% are currently doing good (or in some cases awesome) business but the rest of the companies are not. All the Finnish game development studios need excellent business people that understand company business strategy, but also product strategy and execution in free to play market.

Due to the fast growth of the industry, a lot of people have been recruited into the industry’s most successful companies. What makes things even trickier is that most companies are looking for senior people. There are now more than ten educational institutions providing games education but they only produce around 200 graduates a year, and these people are obviously not seniors. Additionally, none of these schools concentrate on business issues as heavily as Aalto Ventures Program has planned.

Most jobs in the Finnish games industry are currently being filled with people from outside of Finland. This is not a bad thing at all, but it would be great if the educational system could respond to the needs of the industry more comprehensively. In Sweden, for example, 500 students graduate from games education annually. This responds to the needs of the Swedish games industry rather well and they are recruiting much less talent from outside of their borders.

Game Monetization Design, 3 ECTS

Freemium economics, Mobile user acquisition, and Analytics

The course aims to showcase how game design and monetization issues are related and what are the key tools, platforms and procedures in today’s free to play games business.

This set of sessions will guide you to the world of free to play game design and monetization. Lessons will start from beginners intro of free to play and then will go through design, retention issues ending up in product management and marketing. In addition to the above, also the user acquisition best practices will be covered. All the topics will be covered by international game industry veterans.

The credits from the course will be issued under course code TU-91.9910 (code with varying course content). Please note that this course will not have Noppa or Oodi pages.

More information about the course will provide:

Ilkka Immonen, Games Business Education @ AVP
+358 40 831 1987
ilkka.immonen (ät)

Niina Gromov, Marketing Coordinator @ AVP
+358 50 549 9871
niina.gromov (ät)

Meet the Speakers

All Speakers

Course Structure

Game Monetization Design

Lectures are on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 17.00 – 19.00. On Tuesdays lectures are at the Aalto University School of Business (A201 Saastamoisen Säätiö, Runeberginkatu 14-16, Helsinki) and on Thursdays lectures are at Startup Sauna (Betonimiehenkuja 3 D, Espoo).

Date Speaker Details
Tue 14. Jan Ilkka Immonen Introduction
Thu 16. Jan Annakaisa Kultima Game Design provo
Tue 21. Jan Teut Weidemann, Ubisoft Beginners intro to F2P
Thu 23. Jan Teut Weidemann F2P mechanics
Tue 28. Jan Aki Järvinen, Grand Cru Free to play, Tricky to design, Game Design in Free to play context
Thu 30. Jan Michail Katkoff, Scopely Product Management
Tue 4. Feb Reko Ukko, Seriously Making Games: Designers Journey
Thu 6. Feb Nicolas Lovell The Pyramid of Free to play
Tue 11. Feb Touko Tahkokallio, Supercell Retention, Design
Thu 13. Feb Thorbjorn Warin, Grand Cru Marketing, Metrics, Monetization, A holistic view on user acquisition
Tue 18. Feb Ville Heijari, Playhaven Current trends and best practices
Thu 20. Feb Tiina Zilliacus, Gajatri Studios Case Yoga Retreat, Hands-on experiences on publishing f2p for iOS

The course will not be organised on academic year 2014-2015


Please note that this course will not have Noppa or Oodi pages.

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