Stonetrip is an innovative company with its head office in Sophia Antipolis, Antibes, France and its production site at the Villeneuve Loubet business center on the Côte d'Azur.
The company was created by Philip Belhassen and Nicolas Peri in 2003 after over a year of research and development into rendering engines and server applications for mobile terminals. In November 2005, this research culminated in a patent application for generating real-time multimedia environment applications on servers for mobile terminals.
A lot of time and effort have gone into making ShiVa 3D a great tool to help you achieve the vision you have for your game or 3D application. Here are some facts about the engine and the success our users have had to date:
- More than 8,000 applications
- Thousands of games have been created on the platform
- Hundreds of iPhone titles with millions of downloads
(our in-house game iBall3D alone received more than 10M downloads)
- 100,000+ hours of engineering invested
- 60% of users based in North America
- More than 100,000 users
Philip Belhassen and Nicolas Peri's central concept was to create a cross-platform community video game. Nicolas had already developed the foundation for what will be later know as the ShiVa engine, when Philip suggested to make the engine available on multiple platforms at once, covering not only powerful desktop machines, but also internet servers, consoles, and even mobile phones.
Although there were existing video game creation tools, there was nothing available to make these natively cross-platform. Today, we can hardly understand how revolutionary that multiplatform vision was, 10 years ago. Using multiple devices for entertainment, gaming and media has become second nature to all of us. We play games on our phones that look like console games, watch videos on devices that make any Star Trek gadget look outdated, and have PCs that are a magnitude more powerful than the fastest super computers of the early 2000s. Back then, mobile phones hardly looked anything like the multicore powerhouses we have today, most of them were little more than digital wristwatches. They had slow and low resolution monochrome displays and very limited graphics capabilities. Programming 3D games for those devices was unheard of and very much an idea way ahead of its time. There was no 3D engine that would run on those devices. There were no dedicated game development tools for phones.
In 2005, version 1.0 of the StoneTrip Development Kit (STDK) was completed. The technology was very ahead of its time and broke new grounds in so many ways that customers and artists alike were overwhelmed and requested something more traditional. StoneTrip had created a product that could do almost anything, but could be used by only a few. So instead of releasing the product, StoneTrip returned to the drawing board and went quiet for several years.
In 2007, StoneTrip released the overhauled and rebranded STDK, from now on known as the ShiVa Editor 1.5, to much critical acclaim. The tool and the engine were widely accepted and recognized as innovative and easy to use. Coincidentally by that time, the iPhone sent huge waves through the world, bringing touch-based interfaces and GPUs to mobile phones. Suddenly, the hardware had catched up with the software StoneTrip had developed many years ago, and the cross-platform vision that was a part of the company from the beginning was starting to pay off. Today, StoneTrip is one of the leaders in its sector and has developed a production studio and a consultancy office to ensure that it can meet the needs of all its customers.
ShiVa 1.5 sported an impressive feature set with state of the art graphics, a revolutionary Editor that allowed for an innovative workflow and incredible ease of use. ShiVa offered a start-to-finish solution for game development, all in one application. Its unique approach to game design, given its never-before seen modularized Editor, made it stand out from the crowd of the engines of its time. ShiVa 1.6 expanded on the success of version 1.5. The update saw the addition of our unique megatexture-like terrain Editor module, the in-Editor animation module and the first iPhone exporter. While version 1.7 mainly focused on improvements on the already existing modules, ShiVa 1.8 added over 150 new features, improvement and bugfixes, more than 300 new api functions and great workflow improvements.
ShiVa 1.9, our biggest and also our current release, launched with its eagerly awaited new features in place: C and C++/Cocoa/Objective-C coding alongside the LUA-like StoneScript language, support for industry standard plug-ins such as NVIDIA PhysX and the F-Mod sound library, the Unified Authoring Tool and access to the Mesh API. The renderer gained the ability to display point lights and cast dynamic shadows, parallax bump mapping, and calculate physics compound bodies, just to name a few improvements. Optimizations such as mesh level frustum culling and static occlusion culling made the engine even faster, and the long-awaited Script-to-C++ translator made it an instant hit.
We see ourselves as a company with a vision. Our customers are part of the StoneTrip family. We want to enable them to make great games, we want to empower our users to become successful and famous by selling their products on all available app stores on as many platforms as possible. ShiVa is very competitively priced, we charge one flat fee for the Editor including all the exporters for the multitude of platforms we support, so you do not need to pay us a small fortune to get possibly the best cross-platform game development tool in the world. Still, StoneTrip has been profitable from the start, and since the release of ShiVa 1.5, the company has grown by almost 200% annually. The StoneTrip philosophy is based on being in the market and close to its customers, while remaining at the cutting edge of 3D real-time development.