Celestial Games

I was fortunate enough to start up a game development company with 3 others, and it was a success. A hard task considering that game development in South Africa was tiny.

My main role was to develop all of those bits of the game that no one talks about; level designers, graphic editors, and release package management. We all had our hand in everything though, so level design, graphics, engine coding, and far too many late nights. I used C++ only for all development.

A bit of history

We started the company with the help of Vision Software back in 1996. We had already developed much of our first game, Toxic Bunny, and wanted the game to see the light of day. It was a passion project of all of us, and we truly believed that it would be a success. We got Vision Software, who at the time were the leading game distribution house in South Africa, to realise we weren’t just hyped up youngsters.

In November 1996 we released the game to critical success topping the charts. We eventually sold 7000 copies in South Africa, and 150000 internationally.

We followed this up with The Tainted. An ambitious project, and one we would eventually only release in 2001. It never achieved the success of Toxic Bunny; several factors affected its sales. It was probably a project that was too ambitious for our small team. We had technical features beyond any of the games in the same era. However, we released it and it sold.

Achievements

Released Toxic Bunny

A PC based platform game released in late 1996. Made 3rd place in sales at Incredible Connection, beating out the likes of Wing Commander. 1500 copies sold out over Christmas 1996.

Released The Tainted

Our second game release in late 1999. A far more ambitious project than Toxic Bunny. Was a technical leader with dynamic lighting and 3D maps, which at the time were unheard of.