From real life to game world

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 13 May, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 13 May, 2006, 12:00am

HONG KONG MAY not have a software developer as big as Microsoft, but it does have its own world-class software game developer. Enlight Software, founded in 1993 by chief executive Trevor Chan Ming-yuk, has created computer games such as Bad Day LA, Marine Park Empire, X3 Reunion, Zoo Empire, Hotel Giant, Restaurant Empire and Seven Kingdoms II.

The Fryhtan Wars has been hailed by software reviewers as a benchmark for future empire-building games. Next year, the company plans to launch Baseball Mogul that will allow players to develop a virtual baseball team for the world playoffs.

Capitalism, one of the company's first games, received critical acclaim from publications such as Power Play, a leading gaming magazine in Germany, for being the most realistic and one of the best economics games of all time. Shortly after its release, it was included in entrepreneur business management courses at Stanford University and Harvard University.

Mr Chan said his software team concentrated on creating unique and challenging games with a focus on combining entertainment with realistic creativity.

For example, Hotel Giant allowed players to build and operate a hotel in different countries and locations and included balancing a budget, recruiting staff, furnishing and maintaining rooms and dealing with difficult guests.

Enlight's team of software designers, engineers, 3D specialists and programmers spend many hours on research before they begin designing a new game.

Growing international success has created job opportunities for software game artists, designers, engineers and 3D testers.

'Hong Kong has a growing number of software designers who can conceptualise domain ideas and are highly proficient in the areas of 3D modelling, 3D animation, texturing, lighting, special effects, interface design, 2D animation and concept drawing,' Mr Chan said.