Jason and Matthew Doucette, twin brothers from Yarmouth, have scored big with a killer why-didn’t-I-think-of-that concept: take classic games from the 80s and 90s, and juice them with the graphics and processing power of modern gaming platforms. Their independent game studio, Xona Games, has been reaping awards and adoration from gamers and press alike... after less than a year in business. Video Interview with Jason Doucette and Matthew Doucette from Xona Games at the Game Connection / Games Developers Conference - GDC 2010 - San Francisco by Charles Prémont, reporter for Le Lien MULTIMEDIA / videoGAMEScanada.ca.
XMG Studio is a mobile game developer. Whereas other companies often specialize in one type of game, XMG develops a variety of games across very different genres. The Toronto-based company also applies this approach to its operations, as explained by Andrew Kamondy, vice president of business development and corporate marketing.
XMG was founded in 2009 with aims to provide more than just fun entertainment. “Education has always played an important role in our view of things.” explains Andrew Kamondy. “We did some research to evaluate how promising the market was in this regard and then we started. Our first game, Pandemica, featured augmented reality and it attracted excellent critical acclaim. We then took advantage of its success to get into the mobile gaming industry.”
XMG develops a wide variety of entertainment, from shooters to skill games, not to mention augmented reality games. “We actually started with this kind of game.” remembers Andrew Kamondy. “Our first project was a real breakthrough in this field. Later, we expanded our selection. For example, we developed Little Metal Ball, which has generated more than one million downloads. In addition, our first-person shooter (FPS), Marine Sharpshooter, has also topped one million downloads.”
“In total, we have fourteen games available on different online stores.” says Andrew Kamondy. “We develop on three platforms: Apple’s iOS, Android and Windows 7. We even have a game on Facebook and we are planning on developing seven more across all platforms. XMG Studio is in a comfortable growth phase.”
The XMG team consists of forty to fifty individuals - depending on the project - working in Toronto. In addition to development, the company handles several other aspects of game creation. “We take care of a wide variety of development as well as marketing tasks.” explains Andrew Kamondy. “In order to handle marketing and quality assurance, we doubled our staff from twenty to forty employees.”
“A distinctive characteristic of the XMG team is that it consists of equal numbers of men and women.” concludes Andrew Kamondy. “I think this is rather unique. Typically, other companies employ a majority of men. At XMG, even our development team has many women on staff and they often bring a different perspective to our work. We are very fortunate to be able to work this way.”
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