Watch this week’s episode
• Leti Arts is developing an African superhero gaming universe from Ghana
• Buni Media is a Netflix competitor from Kenya
• Mziiki is a Spotify competitor from South Africa
• Full documentary available to embed: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AEzw_d5HaxE
In this week’s episode of Al Jazeera’s Innovate Africa, presenter Ndoni Khanyile visits Accra to interview Leti Arts’ Eyram Tawia, who is developing an African superhero gaming universe.
“The gaming industry in the US is bigger than the movie and the music industry combined,” says Eyram. “The whole focus of the company is to fill in a vacuum in Africa, to pioneer the gaming industry in Africa.”
When Eyram was younger, he tried to copy Western games, but realized that he “could make cooler superheroes with African powers.” His African superhero universe already features characters based on Ananse and Shaka Zulu, not to mention pharaohs and Somali pirates. Greedy presidents also make an appearance as villains.
Eyram believes games can play an important role in society. “Captain America was created at a time of war,” he says. “People need superheroes to cling to, so we also want to do that… We want to see Batman giving a call to Ananse: ‘Hey, help me save the girls in Nigeria.'”
He believes there’s an untapped market for local gaming content. “Everyone has Angry Birds on their phones,” he says. “People do play games, but they’re not psyched to consume local content,” something he plans to change soon.
This week’s episode also features Kenya’s Buni Media and South Africa’s Mziiki, Netflix and Spotify competitors respectively, focused on high-quality African content.
Africa Innovates showcases Buni Media’s puppet satire, The XYZ Show, which is now in its 10 season, with over 10m online views, and Diamond Platnumz, who is one of Mziiki’s most popular artists.