SYBO Games

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SYBO Games ApS
Industry Video game industry
Founded 2010
Headquarters Copenhagen, Denmark
Key people
Mathias Gredal Nørvig (CEO)
Bodie Jahn-Mulliner (President & Co-Founder)
Sylvester Rishøj Jensen (Chief Creative Director
Daniel Persson (Head of Games
Naz Amarchi-Cuevas (Head of Licensing)
Products Subway Surfers
Blades of Brim

SYBO Games is a mobile game developer company located in Copenhagen, Denmark founded by Sylvester Rishøj Jensen and Bodie Jahn-Mulliner. They are mainly known for being creators and intellectual property owners of Subway Surfers, that they developed together with Kiloo. They have also released another mobile game called Blades of Brim. Like Subway Surfers, this is also an endless runner freemium title with in-app purchases.[1]

Games popularity and TV production[edit]

One week after the release of Subway Surfers, the freemium running game for iOS had three million downloads and was the most downloaded game in 20 countries.[2] Consequently, AppAdvice named it the Game of the Week for May 31, 2012.[3] Four months later, Subway Surfers was available to Android users and quickly spread.[4] In another month, the game made it into the top 20 growing Facebook apps by monthly active users.[5] Eight months after the initial release, the game landed 100 million downloads.[6]In 2017, Subway Surfers was the most downloaded game across the globe.[7]Subway Surfers is the first Android mobile game to cross one billion downloads in Google Play, a milestone reached in March 2018.[8]

Today, the game has been downloaded 2 billion times and is still increasing.[9]

The success of Subway Surfers has also resulted in an animated series. The short-form episodes premiered June 1, 2018. A long-form series is currently in development.[10]

Game concepts and business model[edit]

The core of SYBO Games' game concepts and business model has proven itself effective without any need to spend money on marketing while the company earn money from in-app upgrades and ads.[11] The games are free-to-play, and highly intuitive for new players at almost any age to start and get a sense of achievement and succeed without paying to win. Furthermore, it is a high priority making humorous game universes with stunning, cartoony graphics.[12][13]

SYBO Games launched SUBSURF, a licensing and entertainment arm to further extend 'Subway Surfers' into a consumer lifestyle brand. The SUBSURF brand will blend a number of influences including street art, youth fashion, skate culture and dance.[14]


Knowing each other from the leading animation institution in Denmark, the Animation Workshop, Creative Director Sylvester Rishøj Jensen and CEO Bodie Jahn-Mulliner founded SYBO Games in 2010 as a consequence of winning 1st prize for best animation movie at Hamburg Animation Award 2009.[15][16]

The movie was about a young graffiti troublemaker who was running away from a railway security guard and his dog, leading the founders to create the game based on the small film. Pitching the game idea for Danish Film Institute, New Danish Screen sponsored SYBO Games’ initiative for the game[17] resulting in a release three years later.

Before they launched Subway Surfers, they also created the game apps Powerflow[18] and Cosmic Cab.[19]

Today, the game studio is completely self-owned and continues to develop regular updates for Subway Surfers,[20][21] while also creating other games for mobile devices.

Subway Surfers Animated Series[edit]

On June 1, 2018, the first of a series of animated shorts debuted on SYBO Games YouTube channel. The 10 x 4 minute episodic series is scripted by Brent Friedman and Francesca Marie Smith and produced by Daytime Emmy award-winning producer Sander Schwartz. Chris Bartleman is supervising director and Michael Hegner is director. Denmark’s WilFilm provides post-production services.[22]

The series story line is as follows. It introduces four best friends as they navigate the exuberant joys and ironically-epic dilemmas of teenage life. Together, these friends explore their magical city on skateboards and discover an amazing mystery that will introduce new technology and change their lives forever.

Awards and honors[edit]

SYBO Games winning Best Pitch at Growing Games 2011 [23]

Subway Surfers declared AppAdvice’s Game of the Week for May 31, 2012 [24]

Subway Surfers nominated in the Community Choice-category by Unity Awards 2012 for games that takes the best advantage of the Unity 3D game engine [25]

Winner of Best Danish Game at Mobil Awards 2012 by Danish newspaper B.T. and Magasinet Mobil [26]

Among top 10 non-stop running game apps for iOS and Android by NDTV Gadgets [27]

Winner of Best Bathroom Break Casual Game 2013 by Best Mobile App Awards [28]

Subway Surfers nominated for Best Nordic Handheld Game 2013 by Nordic Game Awards [29]

Subway Surfers nominated by Producentforeningen for Game Of the Year in Denmark, Spilprisen, 2013 [30]

5th Annual Awards Winner for Best Entertainment App by BestAppEver for Android [31]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Vigild, Thomas. "Nyt dansk iPhone-spil surfer sin sejrsgang kloden over". Politiken. Politiken. Retrieved March 18, 2013. 
  3. ^ Chan, Christine. "AppAdvice Game Of The Week For May 31, 2012". AppAdvice. AppAdvice. Retrieved March 18, 2013. 
  4. ^ Grush, Andrew. "Highly Popular iOS game, Subway Surfers, comes to Android". Mobile Magazine. Mobile Magazine. Retrieved March 18, 2013. 
  5. ^ Darwell, Brittany. "Farmville 2, Instagram, Zuma Blitz, Subway Surfers and more on this week's top 20 growing Facebook apps by MAU". Inside Facebook. Inside Facebook. Retrieved March 18, 2013. 
  6. ^ Sacco, Dominic. "Subway Surfers one of the most played apps in the world". Retrieved March 18, 2013. 
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ Tack, Daniel. "Kiloo's Subway Surfers Making Mobile Waves". Forbes. Forbes. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  12. ^ "Bodie, producer of Subway Surfers, talked about the mobile opportunities in moderate games". Voice of Game. Voice of Game. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  13. ^ "Lords of the Underground". Unity. Unity. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  14. ^
  15. ^ Arfs, Jörn. "Hamburg Animation Award 2009 geht an Trickfilmnachwuchs aus Dänemark". Hamburg Animation Award. Hamburg Animation Award. Retrieved March 18, 2013. 
  16. ^ Arfs, Jörn. "All winners of the 6th Hamburg Animation Award 2009". Hamburg Animation Award. Hamburg Animation Award. 
  17. ^ Løvind, Simon. "New Danish Screen – Spilordningen støtter ni danske computerspil til børn og unge". Danish Film Institute. Danish Film Institute. Retrieved March 18, 2013. 
  18. ^ Whitfield, Aaron. "Sybo Games launches 'PowerFlow'". Pocket Full of Apps. Pocket Full of Apps. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  19. ^ Whitfield, Aaron. "'Cosmic Cab' from Sybo Games Released". Pocket Full of Apps. Pocket Full of Apps. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  20. ^ Calimlim, Aldrin. "Surf And Sprint Through The New York City Subway In Subway Surfers". AppAdvice. AppAdvice. Retrieved March 18, 2013. 
  21. ^ Calimlim, Aldrin. "All Train Tracks Lead To Rome In Subway Surfers' New Content Update". AppAdvice. AppAdvice. 
  22. ^
  23. ^ Askholm, Kirstine. "Pitchkonkurrence - Øvelse gør mester". Interactive Denmark. Interactive Denmark. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  24. ^ Chan, Christine. "AppAdvice Game Of The Week For May 31, 2012". AppAdvice. AppAdvice. Retrieved March 18, 2013. 
  25. ^ Chapple, Craig. "Unity Awards 2012 finalists named". Develop. Develop. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  26. ^ Editors. "Se alle vinderne fra Mobil Awards 2012". Magasinet Mobil. Magasinet Mobil. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  27. ^ Iyer, Sandhya. "Top 10 non-stop running game apps for iOS and Android". NDTV Gadgets. NDTV Gadgets. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  28. ^ "Winner of 2013 Overall Awards - Best Bathroom - Break Casual Game". Best Mobile App Awards. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  29. ^ "Nominees revealed for Nordic Game Awards 2014". Nordic Game Awards. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  30. ^ "Nominerede til Spilprisen 2013". Producentforeningen. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  31. ^ "5th Annual Awards Winner for Best Entertainment App". Best App Ever Awards. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 

External links[edit]