Dhruva Interactive

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Dhruva Interactive
Basic Information
Basic Information
Company Type
(developer of)
Conga Bugs
RPG Game - XNA Game Studio
Pool On The Net
GameTantra Multiplayer Game Platform
Software & Programming
Key People
K.Rajesh Rao, CEO
Raju Patil, Director of Operations
Ajit Pillai, CFO
Mukund Rao, Studio Head
Keshav B. Channa Technical Director

Based in Bangalore, India, Dhruva Interactive is India’s oldest games company, with over 12 years of game development experience on PC, Console, Mobile, and Web. Dhruva has pioneered game development in India and is the benchmark for quality, experience and innovation. Dhruva has even been highlighted in Tom Friedman's best-selling book "The World is Flat," as a prime example of a young company in a developing nation that has successfully leveraged globalization to compete and collaborate with major conglomerates from around the world in ways that were not considered possible until recently.

India’s premier game development studio

  • Multiple awards and internationally acclaimed
  • Participated in the development of over 30 AAA games (big budget blockbusters) for leading publishers – Microsoft, Disney, EA, Codemasters etc.

Multi-platform development capabilities

  • New Gen Consoles, Online, PC and Mobile

Proprietary online gaming technologies

  • Proven technology platform - multiplayer games, creating online communities

Full spectrum of capabilities

  • End-to-end game development, Game production services, and Technology platform creation

History[edit | edit source]

1997[edit | edit source]

Dhruva Interactive was founded in 1997 by K Rajesh Rao, with a vision to become a leader in games development in India, developing and publishing high end cutting edge games across various platforms. Dhruva signed up for Intel’s Technology Access Program to build a 3D game engine cum demo optimized for the Pentium II/AGP platform (which was the latest processor at that time) - becoming the first games company in India. This R&D development was the innovative pitch that enabled Dhruva showcase its capabilities to worldwide publishers, resulting in bagging a development contract from Infogrames to make the PC version of the hit game, Mission Impossible, based on the Hollywood blockbuster.

[1] ThunderDome: The first 15 months were spent creating a world-class Direct 3D based game engine aimed at the mass market graphics leveraging the Direct X platform with the enhanced graphics capabilities of the Pentium II processor range. This development was the innovative pitch that enabled Dhruva showcase its capabilities to worldwide publishers.

1998[edit | edit source]

Mission: Impossible: Contract with Infogrames (now Atari) to develop the PC version of the game based on the Hollywood blockbuster. Dhruva was the first games developer from India to work on a major international game title.

2000[edit | edit source]

Dhruva Interactive created broadband educational content for world wide client such as Daiichi, SPH Mediaworks etc.

Eric Mottet, Co-founder and worldwide head of games development at Infogrames takes an equity position in Dhruva

[2] Saloon: A demo game, set in the American wild west showcased a revamped version of the ThunderDrome engine.

2001[edit | edit source]

Dhruva signed on by leading publishers Infogrames Melbourne House and Codemasters (UK).

Partnered with Infogrames, Australia in the development of one of the most popular PC based games – Jeff Grammond’s Grand Prix 4

TOCA Race Driver: Became the first Indian company to have developed content for the PS2 console by contributing to the development of Codemasters's hit title which went on to becoming a leading racing franchise on the PS2

Dhruva launched its web-based games business. Web-based games included Hopper Menace, Santa's Night Out, Shootappan, and Snowballin' Willy.

Kaun Banega Crorepati (KBC): Built this official blockbuster web-based game for the Star TV network.

2002[edit | edit source]

“I’ll be back Rich” : Developed and published India’s first web based 3D game based on Wild Tangent’s browser based 3D game engine.

Mission: Impossible Operation Surma: Partnered with Infogrames for the development of the content for PS2, Xbox, and PC platforms for the game based on the Hollywood blockbuster.

Terminator 3 – Rise of the Machines: Partnered with Infogrames for the development of the content for PS2, Xbox, and PC platforms for the game based on the Hollywood blockbuster.

Microsoft Train Simulator II: Partnered with Kuju Entertainment for the development of content for Microsoft’s key title.

2003[edit | edit source]

Forza Motorsport: Microsoft enrolls Dhruva to work on its #1 Racing Franchise for the Xbox. Dhruva is the first such game development partner from India.

TOCA Race Driver 2: Partnered with Codemasters on content development for the sequel to TOCA Race Driver.

Dhruva Interactive launched its Mobile Games Division, focusing on developing and publishing key mobile games.

Dhruva partnered with Nokia to launch Copter, Ace Tennis, Carry on Bunny, Snowballin' Willy in the APAC region.

Ace Tennis: Utilizing a robust tennis engine, developed in-house, Ace Tennis was the launch title for the new Nokia Series 40 model in the APAC region in 2003.

2004[edit | edit source]

Dhruva Interactive expanded on its portfolio of mobile games published across major operators worldwide.

[3] Pat Cash Tennis: Based on Dhruva Interactive’s Tennis Engine and collaboration with Kuju Wireless (as worldwide publisher) and Player One (the Pat Cash licensee), Pat Cash Tennis was one of the world’s first mobile multiplayer games. The title Reached #1 on the Charts in the UK, carried by networks such as Vodafone, T-Mobile and O2; Top 10 in Australia.

GameTantra Multi-Player 3D Gaming platform: Launched the gaming platform with title, [4] Pool on the Net, ver 1.0, an online multiplayer billiards game, developed to showcase the capabilities of this platform. Showcased at FICCI Frames 2004.

Charlie Chaplin: Dhruva secured the worldwide mobile rights to publish games based on Charlie Chaplin.

Asterix & Obelix XXL 2 Mission: Las Vegum: for PS2 and PC developed for Etranges Libellules (ELB), France. Dhruva created content for one entire level of this game which involved design of assets, creation and testing. The successful accomplishment proved Dhruva’s ability to handle complex art styles.

2005[edit | edit source]

Dhruva launched 3 block-buster games on a worldwide level. Two of the titles hit #1 positions in key western markets operators such as Vodafone, T-Mobile and Telefonica (O2).

[5]Maria Sharapova Tennis: Using an updated version of the Tennis Engine used in Pat Cash, Maria Sharapova was published through I-Play (Digital Bridges) worldwide. Maria Sharapova Tennis received reviews scores of [6] 8/10 by Midlet Review,[7] 90/100 by Mobile Game FAQ Review, and a [8] 7.9/10 by Gamespot.

[9] Phil Taylor Darts: Published through Player One in the UK and debuted #1 on the Vodafone UK charts.

[10] Slyder: Through a co-development deal with Sandlot Games, one of the top Casual Game publishers, Slyder Slyder was released worldwide; published through Mobiliss in USA and I-Play in other regions. The game was immensely success and continues to be popular even today.

Project Gotham Racing 3; Partnered with Bizarre Creations for content creation; PRG-3 was the launch title for the Xbox 360 new console launch by Microsoft, one of the highest rated and best selling games for the system.

Battlefield: Modern Combat: Partnered with Electronic Arts for creating environments for this game.

And1 Streetball: Partnered with Ubisoft for creating content.

TOCA Race Driver 3: Partnered with Codemasters for the third release after having contributed to the successful past two releases.

2006[edit | edit source]

[11] Cricinfo Genie Partnering with Cricinfo, the world’s leading Cricket website, Dhruva built and published one the most innovative products aimed at the cricket-crazy Indian. The application allowed users to watch Cricket matches LIVE on their mobile phone, using simulated animations to showcase the action. Cricinfo Genie involved the design and creation of a back-end system which ensured real time information transfer of the on-field actions and involved the setup of a dedicated country-wide server infrastructure. The game simulation engine required 20+ attributes per ball to be simulated. The Cricinfo Genie application had a record 500,000 subscribers over a period of 18 months. Additional key features included detailed score cards, the latest cricket news, statistics on players & records, schedules and results, highlights of the ongoing games, sharing features, and broad mass market handset support (Low and High end).

Forza Motorsport 2: Partnering with Microsoft Game Studios, Dhruva was one of the main content creation partner for making vehicle art assets for the game.

Project Gotham Racing 4: Building off of the past success with Bizarre Creations on PGR3, Dhruva was chosen to provide art assets for a number of city racing environments for the next game, PGR4.

2007[edit | edit source]

Building on the success of the Multiplayer Connected games and the oncoming Cricket World Cup 07, Dhruva once again partnered with Cricinfo, to develop 3 distinct Cricket based Multiplayer Connected mobile games. Cricinfo Genie v2: The 2nd version of the game first released in 2006 contained significant enhancements to the User Interface and back-end gaming engine making it even more interactive and ‘addictive’. In addition it had features of Prizes, built-in Quizzes, lobby features plus a new improved simulation engine.

[12] Cricinfo Trivia Champ: The first multi-player connected mobile cricket trivia game tagged to contests and prizes.

Classroom Cricket: A Multiplayer Connected Game based on “book cricket.” The game was held in a classroom environment. The students played book cricket while trying to avoid being caught by the lecturing teacher.

Need For Speed: PROSTREET: Partnered with EA's Black Box Studio for content creation on NFS ProStreet.

Colin McRae DiRT: Partnered with Codemasters for creating vehicles and environments for DiRT, which has gone on to becoming a block buster rally franchise.

2008[edit | edit source]

[13] XNA RPG Starter Kit: Microsoft chose Dhruva for the development of an XNA Game Studio Starter Kit. Dhruva built the starter kit with a Role Playing Game (RPG). The title was aimed at teaching developers “how” to make a 2D tile-based RPG game. As such, the game was developed with incredible extensibility in mind, allowing developers to adjust and modify the existing art, code, and design to suit their personal requirements. Played on the Xbox 360 console and PC, Dhruva’s RPG Starter Kit was a great success, bringing the company a lot of credibility and visibility amongst the gaming and game development communities.

Playstation Home: Partnered with Sony UK Studio to develop content for their upcoming persistent virtual world on the PS3 platform.

PURE: Partnered with Disney's Black Rock Studio to develop content for this successful new franchise.

Asterix At The Olympics: Partnered with Etranges Libellules on the latest Asterix game.

NFS: UnderCover: Partnered again with EA's Black Box. to develop racing environments for the title.

Racedriver GRID: Partnered again with Codemasters to develop various car assets.

2009[edit | edit source]

[14]Conga Bugs: Conga Bugs is Dhruva’s first PC casual game under the new [15]GameTantra publishing banner. This top-tier casual game has rich 3D visuals & tons of game play variety and several original characters. The title is currently being distributed around the world, through various distribution channels.

Awards and recognition[edit | edit source]

[16] FICCI BAF Awards 2005 - Pat Cash Tennis (Mobile)

[17] FICCI BAF Awards 2006 - Slyder (Best Mobile Game)

[18] FICCI BAF Awards 2007 - Cricinfo Genie (Special Jury Award for Innovation in Mobile Gaming Application)

[19] Thomas Friedman's book "The World is Flat" - Friedman dedicated 6 pages detailing how Dhruva Interactive successfully plugged itself into the global economy through what Friedman terms as 'triple-convergence.'

References[edit | edit source]