Case Study – Voodoo dice – ShiVa Engine

Case Study – Voodoo dice

Based in Marseille, France, Exkee was founded in 2003 and has been developing high quality and original console, PC and mobile games ever since. The 15-strong studio is composed of creative and energetic talents focused on developing original titles with fantastic gameplay to hardcore and casual players alike. Thanks to an experienced team which has worked across all major platforms, Exkee has an enviable track record of successful titles in its relatively short development history.

In 2008, the Exkee team came up with Voodoo Dice, a puzzle/arcade game combining adventure in a tropical, Tiki-inspired environment with the mechanic of moving dice around to solve puzzles and progress through levels. Since the company had been mostly focused on console games in the past, Wiiware, XBLA and PSN were platforms that were thought to work well with their existing engine technology.

However, for developing on new platforms including PSP and iPhone, Toni Doublet, CEO of Exkee knew they needed an engine that could handle the development challenges presented by these lower powered devices in order to deliver a quality product to their huge potential audiences. He looked to ShiVa 3D, an engine and authoring tool from Stonetrip that has to date been used for hundreds of iPhone games. “The game was almost finished on other platforms when we started the port to ShiVa,” said Doublet.

PSP was a new platform for the engine since no one had yet developed a title for the Sony handheld using ShiVa 3D technology. With the commitment of Stonetrip’s tech team supporting them to make it work, Toni and the Exkee team took a chance on the engine and give it a shot. “We worked closely with Stonetrip on the PSP version of the engine because it was the first PSP game made with ShiVa,” continued Doublet, “and they were very quick to add some features, particularly those which brought us up to ‘TRC’ compliant status.”

The result was a seamless production cycle where Exkee delivered six SKUs to their publisher, Ubisoft, three of which were created using ShiVa 3D; iPhone, PSP and PC. “It took four months to get the game ready on ShiVa, and then a few weeks to obtain the PSP, iPhone, and PC versions,” said Doublet. “Stonetrip proved to us that their engine is both complete and robust because we were approved very quickly by Sony.”

By the end of the project, ShiVa received a hearty recommendation from Exkee to other companies looking carry out similar projects. “For prototyping, or for a full multi-platform development, ShiVa 3D is a simple, powerful, and fast tool.”
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