Unpeeling the Big Potato - Tris, Dean and Ben on Linkee, Dinkee and more!
This London gang of cheeky inventors know how to have fun and you won’t be able to hold back a few laughs reading this interview! I thought it clever they embodied and projected their own goals by writing that “Linkee is marching on in its quest for world domination, like a trivia Napoleon.” Yes, their goals are lofty, but they are achieving them, from TV Shows to multiplayer apps.
WHO ARE YOU?
We’re Big Potato. We aren’t big, we’re not potatoes, but we are a small gang of game inventors from London called Tris, Dean and Ben. Our first game was a cheeky little family quiz called Linkee. It did so well we were able to give up our day jobs and make games fulltime. So, thanks very much Linkee.
WHAT ELSE HAVE YOU BEEN UP TO?
Well, Linkee is marching on in its quest for world domination, like a trivia Napoleon. By the end of 2015 it should be out in Holland, USA, Canada, Australia, Germany and Hong Kong. It has also got a little brother called Dinkee, which is out in the UK this year. And big Linkee has also made the jump to TV in the form of a BBC 1 quiz show called The Link. And then there’s the multiplayer app…we told you Linkee was a megalomaniac.
DO YOU DO ANYTHING OTHER THAN LINKEE?
Yep. In 2014 we funded our adult party game called Bucket of Doom on Kickstarter. We got funded by the skin of our teeth and it’s now out in the UK and US. We were inspired by Cards Against Humanity, who we think are legends, and decided to create our own naughty game. It’s fun. You’ve got to escape from tons of seriously bad situations with the help of hundreds of seriously useless objects. Our original line was, “When the shit hits the fan, you need a plan”, but some stores were getting nervous about that so we changed it to, “The death-dodging party game”.
HOW DID YOU FIND KICKSTARTER?
A tough gig. We knew it was going to be hard work but we didn’t realise how tough it was to get people to read about your product and then reach into their pockets to pledge their hard-earned cash. It’s probably even tougher to succeed in the UK as fewer people here have heard about Kickstarter and are less familiar with how crowd-funding works than they do in the US. Even to this day Tris’ mum is convinced her pledge now means she owns shares in Big Potato!
BEING NEW BOYS, HOW HAVE YOU FOUND THE TOY AND GAME WORLD?
Very friendly and welcoming. We came from the advertising world, which is a relatively small bubble, but toys and games is even smaller. We’ve only been around a year and a half and we feel like we already know tons of people, many of whom have taken us under their wing. And despite being newbies we are starting to get even newer inventors coming to us for advice. It seems like a nice business, everyone helps everyone. We’re sure that if you’ve been in the business for donkey’s years you might say differently but we’re happy to be naively friendly and optimistic wherever we go. A bit like Crocodile Dundee when he gets to New York and starts shaking everyone’s hand in the street. That’s us, but without the big knife.
WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD?
We’ve taken on our first employees recently, which is very grown up. So we’ve got to look after them and train them up so we can put our feet up and let them do all the work. But until then, it’s all about getting at least two or three new products out every year and supporting them wherever they go. Then there’s a new TV quiz show idea we’ve got up our sleeve and a hatful of other ideas (literally a top hat full of scribbles) waiting to be either shredded or given the potato love.