Shiny Entertainment

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Shiny Entertainment
Former type Private
Industry Computer and video game industry
Fate Merged
Predecessors Interplay Entertainment
Atari
Successors Double Helix Games
Founded 1993
Defunct 2007
Headquarters Laguna Beach, California, United States
Key people David Perry
Parent Foundation 9 Entertainment

Shiny Entertainment was an American video game developer based in Laguna Beach, Southern California, and the creator of several popular titles such as Earthworm Jim, MDK and Enter the Matrix. Shiny was founded by David Perry in October 1993. In 2007, Shiny Entertainment merged with The Collective to create Double Helix Games.

History[edit]

In 1991 David Perry, already a veteran video game developer at the time, was working for Probe Software in London on the movie license based video game The Terminator for the Mega Drive/Genesis. The game was to be published by Virgin Games in Irvine, CA. After a proposal was done to him, Perry agreed to complete the work in the United States and moved over to join the Virgin Games USA development team. While in the states he developed McDonald's Global Gladiators and 7-Up's Cool Spot, did early development work on Disney's The Jungle Book and worked on Disney's Aladdin in a joint venture of Virgin Games USA with Sega of America which became a large commercial success.

At this time Perry got a US Green Card and decided to form Shiny Entertainment Inc. To fund it, he signed a three game distribution deal with Playmates Interactive Entertainment and Shiny Entertainment came into existence in October 1993.

The first Shiny release was Earthworm Jim for the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis. It became a huge success and won the Sega Game of the Year award. Several merchandising deals followed which resulted in an Earthworm Jim TV show, comic books, toy lines and other products. The game was soon ported to many different platforms and a sequel, titled Earthworm Jim 2, followed in 1995.

In 1997 former Shiny employees Nick Bruty (President) and Bob Stevenson (CEO) left to form the company Planet Moon Studios.

After the two Earthworm Jim games Shiny created MDK, a 3D action game and one of the precursors of the third person shooter genre, which would be released in 1997 for PC and ported to several other platforms in 1998. At this time Interplay had already acquired Shiny Entertainment and co-published MDK with Playmates Interactive Entertainment.

In 2000 Shiny Entertainment released two games from two different genres, the 3D action game Messiah and the 3D real-time strategy game Sacrifice. Neither became as successful as Shiny's previous releases. Messiah was perceived by professional reviewers as a rushed release with technical problems and flawed gameplay. Sacrifice was well received by critics but still did not become a huge commercial success. It has developed a cult following, however.

In 2002[1] Shiny was acquired by Infogrames (which later changed its name to Atari) for $47 million along with its then current project Enter the Matrix. Despite a mediocre critical reception resulting from technical flaws and unsatisfying game play Enter the Matrix became a commercial success. Shiny created another game based on the same license, The Matrix: Path of Neo, which was released in 2005. Again the critical reception was mediocre and it did not become as commercially successful as the previous game.

Perry kicked off a new Earthworm Jim game for Sony's PlayStation Portable as well as a new fighting Game called Age of Elements at E3 2006,[2] none of which were ever finished.

Atari announced their interest in selling off all their development studios,[3] so Perry resigned in an attempt to help Atari find a quality buyer. On October 2, 2006, Foundation 9 Entertainment acquired Shiny Entertainment.[4] In October 2007, Foundation 9 merged Shiny Entertainment with The Collective to form Double Helix Games.[5][6]

Trivia[edit]

The name Shiny was conceived by David Perry while listening to the R.E.M. track Shiny Happy People on loop during the development of Disney's Aladdin for the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis.[citation needed]

Games[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://web.archive.org/web/20030130144617/http://www.shiny.com/
  2. ^ Q&A: Dave Perry's shiny new gig, Gamespot, May 17, 2006
  3. ^ James Brightman (2006-02-17). "Video Game Features, PC Game Features". Gamedaily.com. Retrieved 2009-11-02. 
  4. ^ Foundation 9 Acquires Shiny From Atari, GamaSutra, October 2, 2006
  5. ^ Foundation 9 merges Shiny, Collective, Gamespot, October 9, 2007
  6. ^ Shiny, The Collective twisted into Double Helix, Gamespot, March 27, 2008

External links[edit]