After Aesir Interactive won the AUREA Award 2018 in the category experience, the community is eager to find out how the success story has continued.
Meet the community #2 – Aesir Interactive
238 years of experience combined. 42 bags of coffee every week. 496 commits per week on Perforce. Anyone giving a self portrait like this, could be considered a nerd. There´s the saying: Don´t judge a book by its cover – and rarely is it as true as here at Aesir Interactive. Admittedly, the online appearance, presenting the team as a great mixture of different skillsets and internationalities, is charming. And who would not like to work in an open atmosphere with open minded people who exchange knowledge, reduce overheads and be efficient? But don´t be fooled: What appears as a startup at first sight, is an award-winning VR development studio, part of a large international developer family – and considered one of the best VR teams in Germany.
Based in Munich, the German team unites over 44 passionate, experienced and highly skilled designers, artists and programmers. Behind the “We are all gamers” attitude, the company is dedicated to clear cut principles: clear communication, coordinated workflows, strong partners and a professional project management lay the foundation for many successful products. Partnerships with ´big ones´ like Wargaming, Eurovideo/ Wild River, BMW, Hologate, WDR, Headup Games, Billionsoft, RTLinteractive, European Games Group, Samsung, Deutsche Bahn show, that Aesir Interactive is anything but a useless playground. Instead it´s one of the exemplary AUREA award winners, showing the skills and creativity of the VR business.
To date, Aesir Interactive has built high quality games for PC, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, HTML5 and SmartTVs. Being a role model in quality and reliance the German studio has recognized the signs of the times early on: In the VR/AR ecosystem, international cooperation is a must. Therefore, it´s no surprise that Aesir Interactive, which – be it intended or not – might easily be abbreviated as AI, is part of the large remote control productions (rcp) family and considered as its most prolific VR team.
Being an independent production house focusing on development, production and mediation of games and gaming applications, rcp GmbH is representing Europe’s biggest developer family. Since 2005 the company is supporting, financing and coaching development studios such as AI, creating games for all major platforms. Five years ago, rcp started to get involved in VR/AR projects for enterprise and entertainment. Currently, the ever-expanding rcp family consists of 12 development studios in Germany, Austria, Finland and Croatia, together with a gamification unit and an in-house publisher with a wide range of expertise in games and entertainment products for all platforms. Thanks to a large network of national and international partners built over the years, rcp has established itself as a credible, efficient and reliable production partner on more than 140 projects for all major platforms. Partners include Rovio Entertainment, Paradox Interactive, Funcom, Deep Silver/Fishlabs, Ubisoft, Astragon, Daedalic, Tivola, ProSiebenSat.1 Games, Ravensburger Digital, Gamevil, Chillingo, Volkswagen, spilgames, DeNA, Bigpoint, Red Bull, Intel, Audi, BMW, Porsche and many more. Supported by rcp, Aesir Interactive could quickly develop to its actual strength.
Large networks areoftensaid to ruin the main start-up assets such as creativity and start-up spirit. With AI that´s not true. Despite its success the team is still passionate to bring immersive and engaging experiences to their players: “Everything we do comes with a big portion of thought and passion. Every game we release is a love letter to the movies, creative content and games that inspire us. This is not only true for our original IPs, but also for games we develop for and with our clients.” With “Meet the Miner VR”, the team has landed a remarkable coup. The documentary-style VR simulation for Oculus Rift and HTC Vive is to be played in a 4D-setup. In the role of a mine worker users discover the hardships and dangers of underground coal mining in Germany 100 years ago, when safety precautions were very low and working conditions at a very bad state. The application is breathtakingly realistic. Only a real mine will cause more intensive sensory impressions. The effect is due to the use of game technologies such as Unreal Engine or Unity3d, giving their productions a stunning lifelike appeal.
Developed in cooperation with the Innovation Lab of WDR (Westdeutscher Rundfunk), the application has dominated AUREA´s “Best VR Experience category” in 2018.Moreover, the project was exhibited by WDR at SXSW, re:publica and Gamescom also nominated for Germany’s most prestigious digital accolade, the Grimme Online Award.Currently, “Meet the Miner” is still being used by WDR to educate schoolchildren about the mining history of the region North Rhine Westphalia. Thus teamwork pays off: WDR’s Lab initiated and headed the project, being accountable for the editorial work whereas Aesir Interactive and rcp managed the technical realization with all the medium specific characteristics.
Dig the coal
Despite of their success elsewhere, AUREA has been a great experience for the Munich team. In addition to valuable contacts, the venue itself played an important role for the overall impression as Stefan Kreutzer, Director Business Development at rcp points it: “We did enjoy our experience at AUREA very much being overwhelmed by a perfectly orchestrated show Europapark is known and loved for. We share the Mack family’s passion for excellent entertainment and feel very honored having received the award for best VR experience acknowledging our work from them.”The VR experts appreciated Europapark’s AUREA as great occasion giving the yet young VR industry a necessary platform for publicity and recognition. That´s why the team is looking forward to participate in the upcoming event in 2020 and to refresh their relationship with colleagues, jury members and organizers. Chances are, that Aesir Interactive and rcp will impress the audience with their new single player experience “DAS BOOT VR DEMISE”.