FRAKTALIA STUDIOS – MEXICAN TEAM FIGHTING THE COLD OF ESTONIA
Next team is from the land of tacos, sombreros, ponchos, tequila and rich culture – Mexico. Miguel Meza, Omar Ocampo and Chrystian Silva from Fraktalia Studios had actually only a few days to make the decision about coming to Estonia. And they accepted the challenge.
GameFounders was actually not the only accelerator they had been applying for. Well, actually there should be a little correction: where Miguel had been applying for. Apparently his team mates were not even aware of any applications at all and the news about going to Estonia came pretty much as a surprise. ”The first weeks in Tallinn I was still confused what are we even doing here?”, says Omar.
Coming from a lot warmer country, they haven´t got used to the cold and (often) windy weather of Tallinn. For example, Chrystian wears a hat also indoors: “Only thing I don´t like about Estonia is the wind. Otherwise everything is great.”
How was Fraktalia Studios born? The story dates back a few years when Miguel was teaching in the same university in Guadalajara where Omar and Chystian were studying. After returning to his hometown, Veracruz, Miguel had some other business he was working on. Howeve, at some point he returned back to gaming. That is when he contacted Chrystian and Omar.
Their 3D endless runner project called „Robo Jungle Rush“ was originally a mix of ideas, kind of everybody´s idea. „We have all contributed a lot in this game,” says Omar, “we are three different characters and often don´t agree on things. We usually get together, talk things through out of everybody´s perspective and then we decide how it´s going to be. We all want the best for this game”.
Living together in the guest house works fine for them. Most of their time is spent on work anyways. All three like to cook, but apparently not in Estonia. Miguel mentions that it is cheaper to buy something ready-made than start cooking from the scratch. Back home, Omar usually cooks for his girlfriend or family, but while being abroad he doesn´t feel like cooking much at all. They also claim that making Mexican dishes is more difficult here because finding right ingredients (like real tortillas) is hard. “We have this dish which is basically a stuffed pepper. Where I´m gonna find this here?” asks Omar.
What are the main differences between Estonia and Mexico? According to Omar, one of the things is that here he can actually walk outside at night without being concerned about his safety: “In my country I always have to look over my shoulder, always have to be very conscious about my surroundings”. Miguel thinks that it is also the problem of distances. Depends on the city of course, but the fact is that taking a walk after clubbing in Guadalajara can be a problem (if you don´t live next door), in Tallinn it often makes sense.
Another thing that these guys are pointing out is the public transportation system and the punctuality. “It´s just so easy here. In Mexico, sometimes it would be easier to walk, but you can´t because of the distances”.
As it appears, Fraktalia team doesn´t have much free time. First days they went out every evening to check out a new place in old town. But now when they have seen much and as Old Town is pretty small, they feel like they have seen it all and don´t go out that much anymore. “I usually wear glasses because I can hardly see, but for a walk in Old Town I don´t need them anymore. I know the whole place by heart, I can go out and won´t get lost,” adds Omar.
Being abroad is not easy if you have people waiting you to come back home. Omar and Chrystian both say that mostly they don´t miss many things back home, but what is really hard is to be away from their girlfriends. Miguel says he misses everything, but not a lot: “I could easily be here 3 more months without feeling bad about not being able to be in Mexico”.
Fortunately, the Estonian people they have met here have made a really good impression on them. All three guys say that people here are kind, friendly and helpful, they haven t had any problems with the language or anything else. If there wasn´t the cold weather, they might even consider living here longer than 3 months.
Wrapping things up and talking about their advice for the newcomers, Omar´s advice sounds like this: “Come in summer! And also come with a plan because you might get easily lost with all the activities in the program.” “Even if the knowledge you are getting here doesn´t benefit you at that very moment, you will have the connections later on for your future plans” adds Miguel.
Fraktalia Studios (from the left): Chrystian, Omar and Miguel