One Week, One Million Downloads: Rapid Prototyping with Mike Mika


Mike Mika has 20+ years game development experience. He helped launch NGMoco, pioneering free-to-play games for iPhone. He's run studios and played a major role in the shift to digital content distribution with Xbox Live and PSN.

He has shipped over 190 games on every platform since the Game Boy. His most recent title, #IDARB was downloaded by over a million people in the first week of its release.

In this episode, we cover his work on several hit franchises, his experience creating #IDARB, his approach to prototyping, design documentation, and the surprise attention he received in 2013. That was the year when the rest of the world became aware of Mike as “The Donkey Kong Dad” when he modified the classic Donkey Kong game for his daughter, so she could play as Pauline and rescue Mario.

"This is insane, but let's just say 'yeah' and see what happens." -Mike Mika

"This is insane, but let's just say 'yeah' and see what happens." -Mike Mika


Connect with Mike

Twitter:  @MikeJMika
YouTube: MicaheljMika

Selected Links from this Episode

Mike Mika Gameography
Commodore 64
Digital Eclipse (“Criterion Collection for games”)
Mega Man Legacy Collection
Yar’s Revenge, and the GBC Remake
Next Generation Magazine
Mike’s Famous Donkey Kong Hack (2.7m views on youtube)

Featured Show Highlights

  • Mike talks about how he started in the gaming industry [5:35]

  • Re-creation of Yars Revenge and meet up with original creator [9:00]

  • Career Start Highlights with Next Generation Game Magazine [11:12]

  • Advice for those working on their own games [18.25]

  • When NOT to have a plan. [25:18]

  • Advice for Developers [28:00]

  • Production Process Techniques and Tips [34:00]

People Mentioned