|Marble Blast Ultra, available
for Xbox 360 and developed by GarageGames with its own Torque
Game Engine technology, has fun and frantic gameplay.
|Marble Blast Ultra in action
GarageGames is currently focused on tool-making–developing
and refining products that others may license and use to make games.
Since forming in 2001, the company has released a line of creative
tools including Torque Game Engine for 3-D games and Torque Game
Builder for 2-D games, along with sample kits that include everything
one needs to create games in a specific genre.
The Torque Game Engine was an evolution from the engine used on the game "Tribes 2," developed by Dynamix. When Dynamix was closed by Sierra On-Line, GarageGames employees bought the source code for the technology they helped create.
GarageGames is working on the Torque X engine, which can be used
by developers working with Microsoft’s XNA program, which brings
independent games to the Xbox 360 console.
The engines can be licensed by developers for a range of prices.
An "indie" license for the Torque Game Engine costs $150.
A commercial license, for persons or companies that make more than
$250,000 per year, costs $749. Neither license requires any royalty
fees ever and both allow developers to publish their games however
|While working at BraveTree, Maruschak worked on "ThinkTanks," which uses GarageGames' development tools.
GarageGames also develops games that use its own tools. "Marble Blast Ultra," the most commercially successful game made with a Torque engine, started out as a test game to prove the abilities of the Torque Game Engine: Advanced.
"Marble Blast Ultra," an Xbox Live Arcade game, was
available within three months of the Xbox 360’s launch. Released
in January 2006, it GarageGames' latest game. However, the company
continues to test its new tool sets with in-house games that may
someday see the light of publication, just as "Marble Blast
The GarageGames Web site offers a catalog of more than 50 games
for sale and download—many with demo versions that customer may
try before buying. In addition to GarageGames’ own creations, the
store hosts other developer’s games that use Torque technology and
publishes unrelated independent games. The goal is to support the
creation of quality independent games made by anyone with the desire.
Between employment at Dynamix and GarageGames, Joe Maruschak worked on the
game "ThinkTanks" as Lead Designer and Art Director for
BraveTree Productions, another company formed by former Dynamix
employees. ThinkTanks is just one example of independent games that
use GarageGames as an online publisher.