Malaysian developer builds full game for iPhone


By CHONG JINN XIUNG and TAN KIT HOONG intech@thestar.com.my

PETALING JAYA: Local software developer Terato Tech will make history this month when it launches the first full-featured iPhone game to be developed in Malaysia.

The game, called Qalvinius, took the company about a year to develop with a team of three artists and three programmers.

Qalvinius is a 2D side-scrolling role-playing game with pretty graphics that is story driven, and players can expect to spend close to a total of 15 hours to finish it.

The story unfolds on the fictional island of Qalvinius where an adventurer named Ares is stranded after being swept there by a storm.

All is not well on the island because a dormant volcano has become active and monsters have started appearing, wreaking havoc in the once peaceful place.

Much of the gameplay will involve the player battling the monsters to gain experience points to level-up to new, more devastating attacks.

Terato Tech managing director Reza Fahmi Razali, 26, told In.Tech that the game contains a combination of ideas by the design team since the company doesn’t have a dedicated writer.

From what we saw of Qalvinius, the art is colourful and clearly draws inspiration from anime — the game’s cartoonish characters with huge eyes are a giveaway.

The game story is simple and straightforward. The player will take on quests for the island’s villagers and earn coins that he or she can later use to buy better equipment and weapons to fight the monsters.

The player will also be able to try his or her hand at mini games within the main game when not in combat.

Though much of the game is centred on fighting, the action isn’t violent, so it is suitable for children.

Qalvinius will be released on the Apple App Store this month. Terato Tech plans to release a free “lite” version of the game together with the full version.

Established two years ago, Bangi-based Terato Tech has developed iPhone applications before, such as CIMB Clicks for CIMB Bank and 1 Malaysia Hotline which is a directory of popular hotline numbers in the country.

The company is working on several upcoming applications, including a mathematics game called Math Maniac and a graphic novel titled Sang Kancil for the iPad, Apple’s popular tablet PC.

Terato Tech is an MSC Malaysia-status company. The Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC), which is guardian of the national initiative, described the company as a promising software developer.

“Reza is an aspiring young entrepreneur who thought himself to program at a young age. He has come a long way and represents one of our brightest talents,” said Rizatuddin Ramli, MDeC industry development division director.

He said other software developers could learn from Terato Tech’s innovative spirit.

To watch a video of the interview with Terato Tech, go to bit.ly/9ONtMk.

++++ www.teratotech.com

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