Games

The team at Playvo has worked with a wide range of clients to provide standalone games and hardware solutions that incorporate games.
 
 
Winter 2011
Dance Party: Working from the success of Motion-On-The-Move we produced an ARM-7 based controller-less dancing game that mixed motion capture technology with streamed video producing a plug-in TV console with a sub $50 retail price.
 

Screen shots and artwork here

Autumn 2010 - Autumn 2011

Motion-On-The-Move: A plug-in TV console aimed at the 2nd world market.
The console integrated an 32-bit ARM-7 CPU, RF chipsets, 2 wireless controllers (with motion tracking hardware, G-sensors, and analog buttons) and SD slot.
Motion-On-The-Move shipped with 10 built-in games which provided a mix of 3D and 2D games covering all the main genres, with additional games and level-packs being downloaded from the internet and stored on the SD card.
In addition to providing input on the hardware specification and design, Playvo designed and developed a simple to use, but comprehensive API which allowed the Chinese software development team to quickly and efficiently produce the games for the unit.
Playvo worked very closely with the Chinese programmers providing an on-site project management, technical support and training together with the tool sets required to complete the games.
Additionally Playvo programmed the 3D games for the system.

Screen shots and artwork here

Autumn 2007

Art production tools for a pair of children's toys for Mattel.

Winter - Summer 2007
Recoding and enhancing the Miuchiz™ handheld to produce Miuchiz2 for MGA-E. The enhancements included production of a BIOS, SDK and associated documentation to allow external developers to produce mini-games for the device.
Several of the built-in mini-games were also changed and upgraded, together with making many enhancements and optimizations to the general user interface.
Spring - Summer 2006
Project management of the Taiwanese programmers; production of the programming tools; and handheld to PC synchronization program for the Miuchiz™ handheld device - part of MGA's Bratz™ universe.
Spring - Summer 2004
An AGB accessory which allowed Hasbro's Colour Video Now CD movies to be played and displayed on the AGBs internal screen. Working with Hasbro’s internal hardware engineers we created an FPGA to enable the image bitstream to be decoded, enhanced and transferred through the cartridge port and be displayed on the AGB's screen. We designed the image enhancement routines (implement in the FPGA) and programmed all the AGB user interface code which included passing back to the FPGA play, pause, etc. commands.
Winter 2001\2
A GameBoy Advance conversion of the popular PC and Internet game QBeez.

Winter - Summer 2000

San Francisco Rush 2049 (GameBoy Color).
Initially we where responsible for the implementation of the front-end menus for the game. After successfully completing that task, we were assigned the remaining programming on the project. This included race modes; jumps; power-ups; sound FX and music; car AI; implementing different handling for each of the different types of car; and the in-game pause menu.

 

Screen shots and artwork here

Data Design
Autumn 1999
Working on a prototype PlayStation-1 sports title to provide a 3d engine (camera and drawing code) for displaying a variety of stadiums and animated characters.
Summer 1999
A short term contract to provide a Windows 98 application to allow the editing of large tile based maps for a GameBoy title being developed by the company.

Winter - Summer 1999
Saboteur (PlayStation and Direct-X)
This is a first person game in the Tomb Raider genre and we where brought into the project to provide additional PlayStation expertise to the existing team of programmers who were heavily Direct-X orientated. Responsibilities included converting the existing Direct-X front end to PlayStation high-resolution mode (640x480 at 50 fps) and for adding the 2D components of the game (inventory, health bars, pause menu, etc.) to both the PlayStation and Direct-X versions. Additionally we implemented PlayStation specific code to handle code overlays, memory cards, dual shock, and MOD playing.

Screen shots and artwork here

1998

Tommi Makinen Rally (PlayStation PAL)
International Rally Championship (PlayStation NTSC)

Chris Emsen joined the company as a director when Tommi was about 60% complete. He took over the role of lead programmer and was responsible for: optimizing the existing code for speed and size; implementing foreign language translations; ensuring the game shipped with-in the time frame specified by the publisher; master production; and liaising with the QA departments of both the publisher and SONY.

Screen shots and artwork here

1997

Spice World (PlayStation PAL and NTSC)

Working with-in the contractual restrictions between SONY and the Spice Girls, Chris Emsen was the lead programmer with the brief not to produce a game, but an "interactive experience" to appeal to (the then untapped) teen female audience.

Charting in the UK Top 20 for over 3 months.

Screen shots and artwork here

1996 - 1997

Total NBA97 (PlayStation PAL and NTSC/J)
NBA Shoot Out 97 (PlayStation NTSC)

Total NBA was developed by a very small team internally at Sony. Chris Emsen joined the basketball team at the outset of the project as 2nd programmer. He was responsible for rewriting the computer players’ AI used in the ’96 version of the game; managing the statistics of the players and teams; implementing the icon-passing control mechanism; memory cards; and completing the in and out game menus. Also, together with the lead programmer, master production and liaising with the QA and Approval departments.

No. 1 in the USA charts for 12 weeks.

Charting in the UK top 20 for approximately 6 weeks, highest position No. 5.

Reviews averaging 90% (Play magazine 92%).

Game review here
Screen shots and artwork here

Pre 1996
Bridge Masterclass With Omar Sharif
The Complete Chess System
Intelligent Strategy Games 10
Go Player Professional

Backgammon Professional

All of these titles were developed with porting in-mind and released on the Atari ST & TT, Amiga, PC (in DOS: CGA, Hercules, EGA, VGA, SVGA, and Windows 3.0 through to Windows 95).

Additionally Go Player was released on PlayStation 1.