Tanakom Viphavaphanich: A Passionate Gamer On A Mission To Transform Thailand’s Gaming Industry

Tanakom Viphavaphanich: A Passionate Gamer On A Mission To Transform Thailand’s Gaming Industry

Tanakom Viphavaphanich, Founder

Tanakom Viphavaphanich


The digital age ignited a revolution in entertainment. Blocky pixels evolved into stunning visuals with the rise of gaming apps and VFX. Powerful computers sculpted fantastical worlds and brought movie monsters to life. At the forefront of such innovation and evolution stands a visionary leader, Tanakom Viphavaphanich, founder of Gambit Ghost Studio. Not many alumni bridge the creative and technical worlds; Tanakom Viphavaphanich, a Thammasat University graduate is a leading force in developing cutting-edge gaming apps and attractive visual effects. Having been in the gaming industry for over 10 years, Tanakom Viphavaphanich is transforming the digital gaming industry in Thailand.

In this interview, Tanakom shares insight into his career journey and foundation of Gambit Ghost Studio.

Can you give a brief overview of your career journey?

I began my professional career at Lazada as an analyst when they first set up an office in Thailand, marking my initial step into the tech industry. After working there for about a year and a half, I decided to pursue my dream of working in the gaming sector. I then joined Questdrop Studio, a Singaporean studio, and within about a year and a half, I became the head of the Thai operation. During this time, I was involved in about three gaming projects before being asked by the Singapore headquarters to help establish a new company called Made Viral.

This experience allowed me to gain insights into both the development and marketing aspects of the gaming industry. However, my career took a different turn for a few years when I had to return to help with my family business. It was during this time that the Covid pandemic hit, giving me the opportunity to explore other business ventures. Drawing on my extensive experience in gaming operations, I decided to establish Gambit Ghost Studio. I recruited my former team members from the gaming industry to help start the studio, and that's how our team began its journey.

Gambit Ghost Studio is positioned within a rapidly growing gaming market. Despite the increasing demand, many European and USA studios have downsized significantly in recent years, likely due to the rising costs of talent. This trend has led them to explore other regions for game development, and Thailand, although still an emerging market, boasts a pool of talented but relatively inexperienced individuals. I believe Thailand has the potential to play a significant role in the gaming industry, particularly in Southeast Asia, once this talent base gains sufficient experience and training.

Our aim at Gambit Ghost Studio is to become a leading game developer in Thailand

Our aim at Gambit Ghost Studio is to become a leading game developer in Thailand. Unlike most game studios in Thailand that focus on outsourcing services, we prioritize training our team and providing them with opportunities to work on a variety of projects to gain the experience needed to compete internationally. While we may undertake outsourcing projects occasionally, our primary goal is to create original IP games for the market.

Can you describe the unique learning and experiences you gained at the university?

During my time at Thammasat University, I studied Management Technology, which combines aspects of management and programming. This course has prepared me for a career in the tech industry. Besides my academic experiences, I consider myself more of a hands-on learner. I believe in working hard and also enjoying life outside of academics. Thammasat University attracts students from various backgrounds, and I believe that interacting with such a diverse group has helped me learn how to effectively communicate and collaborate with people from different cultures and backgrounds. This experience has equipped me to work more efficiently in a professional setting.

How would you describe your leadership approach, and what guidelines or methodologies do you follow to lead?

I view the relationship between a leader and their employees as a two-way street. Building a strong relationship with employees is key to effective leadership. I focus on providing them with clear goals and methods or guidelines to achieve those goals. I monitor their performance and offer advice as needed. However, I guide them closely only initially, so they can learn to produce high-quality work on their own. Providing them with positive energy and confidence is crucial, as it allows them to feel comfortable making decisions in their respective areas.

To foster this environment, I encourage everyone to share at least one idea in meetings. I value their ideas and believe that each employee can offer unique knowledge, experience, or perspective. As a leader, it's important to learn from team members as well. When employees see that their ideas are valued, they gain the confidence to excel and grow on their own, ultimately benefiting the firm.

What are the future plans for the company over the next five years?

Initially, we began as a gaming development company, but our long-term objective is to evolve into a full-cycle entertainment studio. With each project, we strive for improvement, aiming to create an IP (Intellectual Property) that can be expanded into various forms of entertainment, such as board games or TV shows. Our ultimate goal is to establish a well-known original IP that could serve as a gateway to other forms of entertainment we wish to explore. Once we achieve this milestone, we plan to expand our team into different areas and diversify our company's presence across various segments of the entertainment industry, not limited to gaming.

What advice do you have for emerging leaders in the industry?

I believe that being a compassionate leader is paramount. Understanding and effectively communicating with your employees to fulfill their needs are crucial steps in developing a strong relationship with your team members. Once this bond is established, they will begin to align with your vision for the organization, providing them with a sense of purpose to help pursue those visions and ultimately achieve the company's goals.

Tanakom Viphavaphanich, Founder, Gambit Ghost Studio

Tanakom Viphavaphanich is an enthusiastic sports-card collector and gamer. He has professional experience in the gaming industry, e-commerce industry, and digital marketing. Tanakom specializes in data analytics and project management.

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