Sunborn

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Logo for Sunborn Network.
The Mica Team logo from Codename: Bakery Girl.

Sunborn[Note 1] (散爆) or Mica Team[Note 2] (云母组) is a Shanghai-based game developer directed by Yuzhong (羽中).

Mica Team was formed in 2008 as a doujin circle to produce and release the visual novel Girl of the Bakehouse, which was released in 2009. While working on more Bakehouse projects, the group also published doujin artbooks: a K-On!/Haruhi Suzumiya crossover, Touhou Modern Warfare, a book dedicated to Touhou's Suwako Moriya and the Guns&Girls series. The Bakehouse projects eventually led to a partnership with studio GameMaster to develop the strategy game Codename: Bakery Girl, released in 2013.[1]

In 2015, Mica Team incorporated under the name Sunborn and announced their mobile game Girls' Frontline. After three beta tests and development troubles, Sunborn launched the game in Mainland China in 2016, in Taiwan, Hong Kong and South Korea in 2017, and in a global English version and in Japan in 2018. The commercial success of Girls' Frontline enabled Sunborn to announce a remake of Codename: Bakery Girl in 2019 titled Reverse Collapse: Code Name Bakery, and three Girls' Frontline-related games were announced in 2020: Girls' Frontline 2: Exilium, Project Neural Cloud and Girls' Frontline: Glitch Land.[2] Development updates were shared with some regularity through the Beilan Island Shelter Broadcast livestreams, hosted by Yuzhong, Smoke (Executive Producer for Girls' Frontline 2) and Kamie (Executive Producer for Project Neural Cloud) talking through Live2D avatars (very cursed). On 21 April 2021, Tencent gained a 20% stake in Sunborn. According to Yuzhong, the deal involved a 9-figures investment from Tencent and Sunborn would still publish its own games in Mainland China. At the time the studio had more than 450 employees, with about 200 working on Girls' Frontline 2.[3] Neural Cloud was released after public betas in Mainland China in 2021 and in other regions in 2022.

Girls' Frontline 2 and Reverse Collapse were delayed with no release date due to the Covid pandemic, but Girls' Frontline 2 received multiple closed beta tests. Development ceased on Glitch Land in early 2022 but progress on Girls' Frontline 2 and Reverse Collapse was shown during Girls' Frontline 6th Anniversary livestream on 14 May 2022.

Notes[edit]

  1. Sunborn is registered on Steam as “Sunborn Games Technology Co., Ltd.” In Girls' Frontline, it is registered as “SUNBORN Network Technology Co., Ltd.”
  2. Various official renditions have been used for the name “Mica Team”:

References[edit]