Acclaim Studios Manchester

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Acclaim Studios Manchester
Formerly
Software Creations (1985–2002)
Creations Group Limited (2002)
Subsidiary
Industry Video game industry
Fate Dissolved
Founded 1985; 33 years ago (1985)
Founder Richard Kay
Defunct August 27, 2004 (2004-08-27)
Headquarters Manchester, England
Parent Acclaim Entertainment (2002–2004)
Website www.hellogames.org

Acclaim Studios Manchester (formerly Software Creations) was a British video game developer based in Manchester, England. The company was established in 1985 by Richard Kay. They were primarily known for their video games based on movie and comic licences like Marvel Comics, Cutthroat Island, Disney's Beauty and the Beast and the original titles Plok, Solstice: The Quest for the Staff of Demnos, and its sequel Equinox.

History

According to Richard Kay, Software Creations began in 1986 when Steve Ruddy responded to an advertisement he had placed in the Manchester Evening News:

Steve and I hit it off right away. He worked from home, and he did a boxing game called The Big KO. We worked very closely with each other for about 12 months. I hired Mike Ager and Andrew Threlfall, and we were the first four at Software Creations. I got an office on Oxford Road and it was above a computer shop directly opposite the BBC. We did a lot of games for Firebird - they were all for about three or four hundred pounds.[1]

— Richard Kay, Retro Gamer

Most of these early games were ports of budget titles to other platforms such as the Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum, Amiga, Atari ST, NES and the Game Boy. The company's breakthrough game was the Commodore 64 version of the arcade hit Bubble Bobble, a conversion which won critical acclaim and commercial success, and led to Software Creations being asked to do many more ports of popular arcade games.[1] By this time the company had grown to include brothers Mike, Tim, and Geoff Follin, and artist Mark Wilson.[1]

An early demo of Solstice: The Quest for the Staff of Demnos won Software Creations a contract with Nintendo, leading to some high-profile NES and Super NES games.[1]

During the early 1990s, Software Creations was responsible for the development of sound tools used in the creation of music for the Nintendo 64 and its development systems.[2]

Software Creations titles in their later years were all published by now the defunct company Acclaim Entertainment. By May 2002, Acclaim had purchased most of their assets and established their own in-house development unit called Acclaim Studios Manchester.[3] Software Creations CEO Paul Hibbard moved over to the new company as General Manager after the take-over.[3] Just prior to Acclaim's bankruptcy and collapse in 2004, the Manchester studio was dismantled and sold off to try and cover their parent company's financial difficulties. This led the 2 games the studio were working on: Interview with a Made Man and ATV: Quad Power Racing 3 to be cancelled. Interview with a Made Man was eventually finished by SilverBack Studios (which was founded by former employees of Acclaim Studios Manchester) and was released by Mastertronic in March 2007 on the PlayStation 2, and later on Microsoft Windows by Aspyr.

Notable games

Title Year Platforms
Aigina's Prophecy 1988 Commodore 64
Bionic Commando 1988 Amiga, Amstrad CPC, Atari ST, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum
Ghouls 'n Ghosts 1989 Amiga, Amstrad CPC, Atari ST, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum
Plotting Amiga, Atari ST
Silver Surfer 1990 NES
Solstice: The Quest for the Staff of Demnos 1990 NES
Wolverine 1991 NES
Tom and Jerry (and Tuffy) 1991 NES
Altered Space 1991 Game Boy
Spider-Man and the X-Men in Arcade's Revenge 1992 Super NES, Genesis, Game Gear
Double Dragon 3: The Arcade Game 1992 Genesis
Plok 1993 Super NES
Disney's Beauty and the Beast: Belle's Quest 1993 Genesis
Disney's Beauty and the Beast: Roar of the Beast 1993 Genesis
Blaster Master 2 1993 Genesis
Equinox (Solstice 2) 1993 Super NES
Spider-Man & Venom: Maximum Carnage 1994 Genesis, Super NES
The Tick 1994 Genesis, Super NES
Ken Griffey Jr. Presents Major League Baseball 1994 Super NES
The Simpsons: Bart and the Beanstalk 1994 Game Boy
Tin Star 1994 Super NES
Spider-Man & Venom: Separation Anxiety 1995 Genesis, Super NES
Foreman for Real 1995 Super NES
Cutthroat Island 1996 Super NES, Genesis, Game Boy, Game Gear
Hexen: Beyond Heretic 1997 Nintendo 64
Wayne Gretzky's 3D Hockey '98 1997 Nintendo 64, PlayStation
The Rugrats Movie 1998 Game Boy, Game Boy Color
Carmageddon 64 1999 Nintendo 64
NASCAR 2000 1999 Game Boy Color
Boarder Zone 1999 Game Boy Color
Rugrats: Time Travelers 1999 Game Boy Color
Ken Griffey Jr.'s Slugfest 1999 Game Boy Color
Nicktoons Racing 2000 Windows, PlayStation, Arcade
NASCAR Racers 2000 Windows
Rugrats in Paris: The Movie 2000 Game Boy Color
The Simpsons: Night of the Living Treehouse of Horror 2001 Game Boy Color
Scooby-Doo and the Cyber Chase 2001 Game Boy Advance
Rugrats: Castle Capers 2001 Game Boy Advance
The Ripping Friends (as Creations) 2002 Game Boy Advance
All-Star Baseball 2003 (as Creations) 2002 Game Boy Advance
2002 FIFA World Cup (as Creations) 2002 Nintendo GameCube, PlayStation, PlayStation 2, Windows, Xbox
Stuart Little 2 (as Creations) 2002 Game Boy Advance
Gladiator: Sword of Vengeance (as Acclaim Studios Manchester) 2003 PlayStation 2, Windows, Xbox
All-Star Baseball 2004 (as Acclaim Studios Manchester) 2003 Game Boy Advance
Interview with a Made Man (as Acclaim Studios Manchester) Cancelled PlayStation 2, Windows, Xbox
ATV Quad Power Racing 3 (as Acclaim Studios Manchester) Cancelled PlayStation 2, Xbox

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d Bevan, Mike (December 2013). "Bubbles, Baseball and Buzz Saws...". Retro Gamer (122). Imagine Publishing. pp. 74–79. 
  2. ^ Gaming Gossip. Electronic Gaming Monthly. Issue 69. Pg.52. April 1995.
  3. ^ a b http://www.gamespy.com/company/026/026127.html

External links

  • Archived copy of Software Creations' first website
  • Archived copy of Software Creations' second website
  • www.acclaim.com
  • Software Creations (UK) entry on MobyGames
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