An astute question, thought the game team as they pondered what would become Clash’s most significant update. Players were eager to wage war since the game was in its infancy. The team presumed that they would one day release Clan Wars, but not before months of planning, quite a few hours of lost sleep and, subsequently, many liters of caffeine. So why wasn’t Clan Wars part of the original concept? The answer is probably less complex than one might imagine: the team simply didn’t know how they wanted it to work. It was a matter of timing really. Clash was very young then, requiring an aging process to grow roots in the community. Gauging player expectation and interest is an utmost priority, and ignoring that by way of lazy implementation would betray the team’s values. “We knew we wanted to do something really crazy and take it to the next level”, says senior game developer Andreas. “Really crazy” isn’t done in an afternoon anyway. This was



Why is it called Clash of Clans when the clans don’t clash?”
An astute question, thought the game team as they pondered what would become Clash’s most significant update. Players were eager to wage war since the game was in its infancy. The team presumed that they would one day release Clan Wars, but not before months of planning, quite a few hours of lost sleep and, subsequently, many liters of caffeine.
So why wasn’t Clan Wars part of the original concept? The answer is probably less complex than one might imagine: the team simply didn’t know how they wanted it to work. It was a matter of timing really. Clash was very young then, requiring an aging process to grow roots in the community. Gauging player expectation and interest is an utmost priority, and ignoring that by way of lazy implementation would betray the team’s values. “We knew we wanted to do something really crazy and take it to the next level”, says senior game developer Andreas. “Really crazy” isn’t done in an afternoon anyway. This was .
As senior server engineer Jonas puts it: “We could have done something really quick and really simple months earlier, but we didn’t want the players to say ‘Ok, we’re bored, what’s next?’ after a week.” Foresight took precedence. Real time strategy games, already a hallmark of mobile gaming, sought to capitalize on player desire for Clan Wars, with other companies creating their own wily takes on the concept. However undeterred, the Clash team chose to move slowly, making sure both they and the community were ready before dropping such a game-changing feature.
What followed carried the team from November 2013, all the way to April 2014. It was five straight months of rigorous development.
According to the team, what helped most was that every designer was already committed to Clashing. They knew what they wanted as a team and as fans of the game. “We were driven by our own desire to play, not by market research or hearing from above that ‘this needs to be done’. At Supercell, we’re all market researchers”, says Andreas.
Clan Wars turned out the way it did simply because it was created by people who love the game. “You have to believe in what you’re creating. If you play the game, you know what it needs”, says Jonas.
But ask them if it’s easy to join the Clash team and you’ll get a collective “No”, which is fitting, since “no” is used quite liberally in their workspace. When “no” isn’t being said, they opt for silence. But according to team-members who’ve joined from abroad, that’s just part of life in Finland.
“Honesty in Finland is critical, but only in a constructive way. If something doesn’t work, it just doesn’t work. It’s not because everyone hates you”, says game artist James. That raw honesty not only suits the determined denizens of Helsinki but is also a regular sentiment within the team. As Jonas says: “Our team is amazingly pragmatic. When we see a problem, everyone is completely committed to fixing it. This is something unique to the Finnish gaming industry in general and our team in particular.”
Most of all, the team’s efficiency can be attributed to one of Clash’s central tenants: simplicity. “The technology is simple, but it works. The art is very simple, but it’s pretty. Game play is simple, but it has lots of depth”, says Andreas. Keeping this in perspective helps maintain the balance necessary for a game that’s always under construction.
The team’s members have changed completely since the game first launched, but it remains the same at heart. “It’s still a very small, focused group of people working on a game they really care about.”

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