The next edition of the highly popular Fruit Ninja app will be developed at Halfbrick Studio’s new Sydney office as part of the NSW Government’s new $3 million Interactive Media Fund.
Halfbrick Studios, maker of the app, is a video game developer based in Queensland. Fruit Ninja was initially released for Apple devices but also operates on Android OS devices.
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It recently surpassed more than 100 million downloads across these platforms. It’s believed the low cost of the game, combined with addictive gameplay, are the reasons behind its success.
Now it’s been revealed the next edition of the game will be developed in Sydney, with Halfbrick Studios opening a new office in Sydney as part of the Interactive Media Fund, a new initiative of the NSW Government.
“Fruit Ninja will now grow even bigger with a new project to be led by a recently-formed Sydney team,” NSW Deputy Premier Andrew Stoner said in a statement.
“Sydney-based developer Aidan Millott and colleague Dale Freya are currently hiring a new team of talented games developers for the new Halfbrick Sydney studio.”
“The new Sydney team will develop the next evolution of the Fruit Ninja games franchise. The new game will involve players launching a series of fruit to knock ninjas off their towers in a 3D world, with each fruit having special powers.”
“The game, due out in 2012, will initially be developed for Apple’s iOS mobile operating system but will later be provided for other platforms including Android.”
Stoner said the Interactive Media Fund will provide $3 million over two years to support creative digital content, including electronic games and transmedia projects.
“The global digital games market is expected to more than double to $53 billion by 2016 and mobile gaming to triple to $17.5 billion,” he said.
“This fund will… be increasingly important in developing serious business and education tools, as well as entertainment games like the latest Fruit Ninja project.”
Other Interactive Media Fund projects include:
- Dog Money World. Dog Money World is creating an advanced mobile games platform encompassing augmented reality, social components and real-time location gaming.
- Flashcards for iPad by INKIDS. This is an expansion of the Flashcards educational software title, designed for children 2-10 years old to help them learn the alphabet, new words and new languages.
- CADMAP by Ambulance Research Institute. This is a serious game to assist paramedics in their clinical decision-making skills by simulating emergency situations from the safety of their mobile phones.
- Expansion of Nnooo. An expansion to the game developer’s staff will see the employment of two junior programmers, allowing the company to grow more quickly through rapid development of its software.
The new programmers will develop Nnooo’s new game escapeVektor for the Nintendo 3DS and PC/Mac or Playstation Vita.
- Tag Town by MOD Productions. A location-based game that is played cross-platform using mobile apps and desktop web browsers.
- Habitat: the Game by Australian Documentaries. Habitat is an online and mobile game for 8-12 year olds, supported by an animation series, which encourages players to reduce their environmental footprint and help their very own online wild animal survive and flourish.