Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Michael Agustin and Tommy Tran of Gendai Games Talk about their new product GameSalad

How did you come up with the idea for GameSalad?

The idea behind GameSalad is to give people the ability to make their own games. It’s very easy to use. It’s a drag and drop interface. We have a social community and it’s easy to embed the game into other programs such as Facebook or your own blog.

Is it up and running now?

Parts of it. We are currently in closed alpha but all the tools are there to make your own games.

What kind of games can people make?

Right now, we focus on 2D games. We have developed our own engine and plug-in. We chose to go with our own plug-in rather than Flash so we can also support the iPhone. With our engine, people can make their games once and play them in a Web browser or iPhone.

How do you charge for it?

We will sell premium games through micro-payements, similar to how the App Store and the xBox360 charges $0.25 to a $1 to play a full game. For free games, we plan to make additional money with advertising. We will offer a free creation tools for beginning game designers and a pro version that lets people make games for the iPhone as well.

When will you start charging?

Sometime at the end of Q2, 2009. We also plan to make our games from the tool and sell them ready to run, over the iPhone App Store. By making our games we plan to make additional revenue and we’ll learn how to improve the tool itself.

How do find the local gaming community?

Austin has a pretty big industry, and developers here are quite helpful.

What platform does it run on?

The game engine runs as a plugin in Web browsers on all platforms. The tool will be initially Mac-based because there are statistically more designers on the Macintosh. We also like the tools on the Mac such as Xcode and Cocoa, which allow us to build rapidly and provide a polished interface.

Can we hear your Fastpitch?

Gendai Games is a game creation for the rest of us. The games market is over $2.25B worldwide with over 200M users there are more players online than all the video game consoles combined. For the long tail of game developers, it is difficult to create and publish their own works. Gendai Games is an open platform for user-created games that are playable on mobile platforms and the web. Non-programmers including designers and graphics artists make up the majority of game developers. Our tool lets them embed their game on the web and mobile phone in the same way that YouTube can be embedded. The company will use micro transactions to charge for game playing. The product is in alpha and is under evaluation by game companies like Disney, Sony, and Electronic Arts.

Best regards,
Hall T.

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