Social Point was created in 2008 by our CEOs Horacio and Andrés, the first person to join their project (that had nothing to do with the type of games that we create nowadays!) was Rubén Álvarez our 2D illustrator. His starting date was the 22nd of June of 2009. He is the first employee and he had the pleasure to see how Social Point has grown.
Do you want to discover the history of Social Point since its beginning? Thanks to Ruben now it’s possible:
Where were you before joining Social Point?
Before joining Social Point, I was working for Honda Greens designing and illustrating the 2008 Honda catalog. Apart from that, I was a freelancer for a time doing illustrations and some page layout for Stihl.
How did you hear about the company?
It was funny because my uncle, an acquaintance of Horacio’s father, mentioned to me that they were looking for an illustrator for something to do with video games. I got in touch with Horacio right away and we arranged an appointment for a job interview, and here I am 6 years later. I’ve known Horacio for many years. We have friends in common.
What was Social Point when you came on board?
Well, I remember we were in the incubator offices of Barcelona Activa back in 2009 on the first floor. It was the first door you passed on the way up the stairs, an 8×8 m2 module or so. When I joined, there were only three of us (Andrés, Horacio and me).
My first project was to create content for Publistars (a contest involving a number of tests related to advertising at the time when it was only played on Facebook) and then do a “remake” of the same game with a serious makeover. I also have fond memories of the games “Flying Dog”, “Jumping Dog”, “Alien Attack”, “Social Park”, “Social Empires” and many others.
Do you remember the day you started working at Social Point?
It would be more or less in early March 2009, and the truth is I was very excited because for the first time I had a job doing what I liked best, which were video games. I was very nervous on the first day because the CEOs were relying on me and I, of course, had to measure up and produce work of the quality they expected as well as learn new tools for the job on a daily basis. Let’s just say it was a very rewarding time for me.
How have you changed over all these years you’ve been at SP?
Well, it was a radical change in every way because I finally had a real permanent job, and, on top of that, involving video games. That meant I could buy my monthly dose of video games among other things, and eventually leave home and get my own little apartment. This was unthinkable for me years ago. Professionally, it has given me a lot, as I came in every day with the motivation to learn new things like handling Flash animation, moving over to the new vector graphics editor Adobe Illustrator (I only knew how to use Freehand), Photoshop, etc. I have a great many friends at SP, sometimes you have no choice, since most of us are just as much “freaks” in this regard. Also, lately, I feel a great fascination for dragons and I’m not sure why…
What is the most rewarding time you remember about your career at SP?
As I mentioned before, acquiring the knowledge on a daily basis to become the professional I am today, although I still think I have a lot of things to learn and that’s an incentive to work with enthusiasm and excitement. That’s my philosophy, besides being surrounded by all this talent and being able to learn their tricks.
What about the most challenging?
The most challenging time was perhaps in the first Game Jam. It’s a way of testing yourself over a weekend to see if you’re capable of developing an idea and final video game in just two days. It was hard but rewarding, a great experience that I will sign up to whenever possible.
Is there any one creation of yours that you’re particularly fond of?
Jumping Dog. It was really fun because it was the first time we made a vertically scrolling game in which you had to move forward with a little aviator dog by bursting balloons in order to beat your high score. Artistically, I had a great time because I was in charge of bringing that little dog to life (the first SP mascot for me) and search for references of an animal’s gait cycle in order to apply them to the dog, among other things, and it was also the first game we ported to iPhone.
What about the future, what lies ahead?
Well, I think things will fully shift over to the mobile and tablet market. Many leading companies are turning to that market and it’s understandable since today, who doesn’t have a smartphone or a tablet? We will also continue with 2D and 3D graphics equally, except that more and more people will join us and at some point we won’t know where to put such a crowd. And dragons will still be all the rage.
As a veteran of the company, what message would you give to people just starting their career at SP?
Make the most of all the advantages Social Point provides for you to be more versatile and a better professional, language classes, training, parties and so on. You don’t always get the chance to improve your skills.