More initiatives of the Hamburg Kreativ Gesellschaft
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More initiatives of the Hamburg Kreativ Gesellschaft

Three Questions to: Soapbox Interactive, working on "Rocket Science GONE WRONG"

Soapbox Interactive aim high: With support of the Gamecity Hamburg Prototype Funding, they have not only been working on a multiplayer first-person shooter with new game mechanics - they are even developing their very own game engine. Now, the team is celebrating its next funding success: They have been accepted into IFB Hamburg’s "InnoRampUp" program, aimed at particularly innovative start-ups from Hamburg.

Soapbox Interactive's founders Clemens Runge and James Rucks visiting the Tokyo Game Show

A FPS game in which the players can completely destroy the game world, combined with high graphical detail, as well as a competitive multiplayer mode: With this vision for their debut game "Rocket Science GONE WRONG", the Hamburg-based studio Soapbox Interactive was able to convince the awarding committee of the Prototype Funding that a grant of 48,000 euros for the development of a prototype is in good hands with them in 2021. Their goals are ambitious: They are not only working on the game itself, but are also developing their very own game engine, which makes the special game mechanics possible, in which the game world, built of millions of voxels, can be completely taken apart by the players. Ultimately, the game also serves as a showcase for the underlying technology.

The studio’s two founders certainly have the necessary skills for this: Clemens Runge is currently pursuing his master's degree in electrical engineering and has already gained years of experience with hard- and software development as well as image processing, and James Rucks, in addition to pursuing his computer science master's degree, has experience researching the use of Deep Learning in 3D environments and designed levels for a successful open source project.

Their own project is progressing well and the team is growing - now Soapbox Interactive was able to secure further financial support with their convincing concept: The state-owned Hamburger Investitions- und Förderbank (IFB) has accepted them into its "InnoRampUp" program, which supports technologically particularly innovative start-ups in Hamburg. Through this program, the studio will receive additional funding of 144,000 euros to support development over the next 1.5 years. We spoke to co-founder James about this.

What motivates you to develop this game in particular?

James: We are fascinated by games in which the worlds consist of small cubes (voxels). They make it possible to easily create complex worlds, like with Lego bricks, as well as dynamically destroy the game world with tools - or explosions. Rocket Science GONE WRONG will be the first game to bring the benefits of a high-resolution and dynamic voxel world to multiplayer!

A construction crane modeled completely in voxels | rendering from Rocket Science GONE WRONG

You received a grant though Gamecity Hamburg’s Prototype Funding program for your project in 2021. What has happened to you and your project since then?

James: Both of us as founders were able to dedicate ourselves to the project full time thanks to the Prototype Funding. In the first year, we developed a new game engine from scratch, which can display worlds made of over 100 million small cubes with real-time light rendering. Also, all the core game mechanics of Rocket Science GONE WRONG, such as movement, weapon mechanics and multiplayer, are already prototypically implemented on this basis.

And just now, you successfully managed to secure a grant from another public funding program for Hamburg-based companies - InnoRampUp: Can you give some insight into what InnoRampUp is and what steps it will enable you to take?

James: InnoRampUp is a grant for technology-based innovative startups from IFB Hamburg. It will fund us for the next 18 months and has already enabled us to hire two new employees. The additional manpower will allow us to bring both our game engine and our game to market much faster.


Find out more about Soapbox Interactive on their website: https://soapbox-interactive.com/ or their LinkedIn-Profile. You can also read a short portrait of their project Rocket Science GONE WRONG here in our project database. 

And you can find everything about our Gamecity Hamburg Prototype Funding program right here.

News

Hamburg Games Conference: Focusing on the topic “Invest in Games” on March 1-2, 2023

The Hamburg Games Conference will return as an on-site event in a new location in Hamburg. The conference theme "Invest in Games" will shed light on current and future developments in the international games industry.

Games Lift: Team Marty aim outside the box

The heroine may seem young and hot-headed, but there is an experienced team standing behind her: Babsi Bullet is an action-packed puzzle platformer for touchscreens. Team Marty are pouring their hearts into the game – and real craftsmanship.

Games Lift: Team ACAS get along with nuts and sledgehammers

Few games look as disarming from a distance: About Cannons & Sparrows is a metroidvania that starts with a small cannon hatching from an inconspicuous egg. The seasoned animation pros of Team ACAS may not have a finished game yet, but they do have a strong vision.

From Prototype Funding to a Publishing Deal: Tiny Roar and Daedalic Entertainment partner up for Wanderful

A partnership forged in Hamburg: after receiving 80,000 € in prototype funding for their cozy worldbuilder (then called HEXAGONE) from Gamecity Hamburg, Tiny Roar just announced the game will now go by the name Wanderful and is being published by Daedalic Entertainment! An early build also premiered at the new Polaris convention on the last weekend of October. Here's all you need to know about this upcoming indie darling from Hamburg.

Games Lift: Elin Meinecke on sowing diversity

One person is behind farming sim RPG Evergreen Garden: Elin Meinecke is solely responsible for the art and game design of her project. She brings a degree in illustration to her work in the incubator – and inspiration from her garden.

Recap: Road to Polaris 2022

The Polaris Convention, Hamburg's new community convention centered around gaming, e-sports, and Asian pop-culture, attracted around 10,000 visitors to the Hamburg exhibition halls for its first edition from October 28 to 30. Gamecity Hamburg participated with a joint booth, where we featured five indie developers from Hamburg though our Road to Polaris program, presenting their game projects to a broad audience.

Three Questions to: rose-engine - Makers of the Sci-Fi Horror Hit SIGNALIS

Yuri Stern and Barbara Wittmann have been creating games together for 8 years now, on October 27 their Hamburg-based studio rose-engine is releasing their latest game SIGNALIS. Published by Humble Games, this dark Sci-Fi horror game with its retro optic has already stirred up quite a buzz in the international gaming press. We took this opportunity to ask them about collaborating for so many years and how the match with their publisher came to be.

Games Lift: Team Metacore is up for a challenge

Their hands are full. Their goals are big. But that is no reason to fret for Team Metacore. During our conversation, finding good answers comes to them as easily as sharing a laugh. The mood might make it into their project.

Games Lift: People make the Incubator

The Games Lift Incubator can only exist because many experts support it, teach and coach in it, and keep networking in it. Over 35 veterans from all areas of the games industry are with us. We have asked them why they are doing it and what keeps them coming back.

Road to Polaris - five Hamburg indies at the convention

Polaris Convention is approaching - 3 days with numerous key players and artists from gaming, e-sports, cosplay, and content creation from October 28 -30. Through our Road to Polaris program, we present five indie developer teams and their games at our joint Gamecity Hamburg Booth and enable them to be part of the Polaris.

Games Lift: Team Godcomplex have thought this through

Would you have guessed that Team Godcomplex are already working on their third game? The four young professionals found each other at the university and have worked together ever since. With their party action game Stack’em up, they want to show what they have learned.

Games Lift: Quick Start in Year 3

Wait – the third iteration of the Games Lift Incubator is already well underway. How is it going? Like clockwork. Bolstered by two years of experience, the program has had an intensive start. Fortunately, this time there also is a break coming up.

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