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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    From whee to Wii

    Brothers Paul Stevens, left, and Jacob Stevens pose with their Wii remotes Sunday prior to their release of MadStone, their self-developed puzzle game. The brothers used $1,000 to fund their project, Paul said.
    Brothers Paul Stevens, left, and Jacob Stevens pose with their Wii remotes Sunday prior to their release of “”MadStone,”” their self-developed puzzle game. The brothers used $1,000 to fund their project, Paul said.

    UA student Paul Stevens and his brother Jacob have taken their love for video games and turned it into a business, releasing their first game for the Nintendo Wii today. Their effort “”MadStone”” draws inspiration from other puzzle games such as Tetris Attack, Meteos and Puyo Puyo.

    “”We’ve been playing games like Tetris Attack, Kirby’s Avalanche, other puzzle games that are considered classics our whole lives, and they’re some of our favorite kinds of games.””

    The brothers created their company, RiverMan Media, nearly three years ago and have created two other titles for the PC system. For their first Wii creation, the brothers wanted to base the project around a familiar format.

    “”Not too long ago we were thinking we wanted to make a puzzle game for WiiWare … you know, puzzle games are what we’re familiar with,”” said Paul, a computer sciences senior.

    “”So we thought we want to make a puzzle game for our first WiiWare game since it is a brand new platform to us – at least we can do something we’re a little more familiar with and the scale of puzzle games, it’s within our grasp and not doing a massive 3-D game.””

    The brothers funded the entire process themselves, putting in nearly $1000. Paul said they make money on the royalties only, though he added that marketing a game for Nintendo is not as complex as one would think.

    “”As long as you got a game concept that you found funding for and it’s not exceedingly violent or racist, then Nintendo says they will put it on (the site),”” Paul said. He added: “”So all we had to do is, after becoming developers for Nintendo, which is a very difficult process – probably one of the hardest parts, but after becoming a Wii developer all we had to do was write up a project sheet for our game that basically described it … We submitted that to Nintendo, and they looked it over and said it was fine and it just kept going from there. And we’d actually already started the game when we submitted the first document to them so we were really hoping we could hold them to their word and it would be content control.””

    The two, who got into video games when Paul was 4, said they’ve had every Nintendo system since then.

    “”We feel that Nintendo is the one (company) truly trying to keep the game market fresh and innovative. Rather than just bumping up the graphics to the next level and calling it a new system, Nintendo actually wants to bring the players new gaming experiences and that’s why we want to be a part of their efforts.””

    As for the future of the company, Paul already has his targets set, looking into the iPhone game market and various other platforms.

    “”But really, we want to be on board with Nintendo’s newest systems … for example whatever (Nintendo’s) newest handheld (system) is, we want to be there and possibly even make a launch title,”” Paul said.

    “”MadStone”” will be available for purchase today on WiiWare, Nintendo’s online marketplace to buy and download games, for 800 points or $8.

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