3d Groove Games (Miscellaneous Unresurfaced Games; Early 2000s)
|3D Groove Games|
|3D Groove's logo.|
3D Groove was a 3D game engine in the early 2000s. Many 3D Groove games were lost when 3D Groove's site went down in 2009.
The 3D Groove engine was created by the company The 3D Groove Alliance, Inc. While the 3D Groove Alliance developed their own original games, their main focus was to develop games to advertise various toys, movies, and cartoons. 3D Groove's Advergames would be developed at the request of a brand, such as Radioshack, At&T, Intel, Pringles, etc. These games could be played online in a web browser plugin, but often there was a more fully featured version of the same game which could be purchased and played offline. Some of these games are lost although some are still playable, due to copies being found on old hard drives or CD's, or copies backed up by the Wayback Machine from the now defunct website.
3D Groove came in the form of 3D Groove SX and 3D Groove GX. In a similar fashion to Java, 3D Groove games could be built to be played on the desktop or in a browser as a .GRV file using 3D Groove GX, or could be developed with Macromedia/Adobe Director to make a Shockwave Player DIR/DXR/DCR file containing the game, which required the 3D Groove Xtra to be installed, using 3D Groove SX.
In 1995, before 3D Groove existed, programmer Jules Urbach helped to code the game Real Pool, a basic 3D pool game for the Mac intended to rival the Virtual Pool series. The game was published through MacSoft, and in 1998 got a Windows port which was published through GT Interactive (which would later become Infogrames) shortly before the 3D Groove Alliance was established.
The 3D Groove Alliance was established July 6, 1998. Mr. Urbach was the company's co-founder, with entrepreneur Chris Kantrowitz and programmer Peter Laufenberg, who did much of the C++ code for the 3D Groove web browser plugin. Other notable names involved with 3D Groove are Patrick Thiel from Pepworks.com (animator,) Ben Encarcion (artist,) Nick Kang (developer,) Jed Whedon and Rene Winkler (music and sound design) and Jamie and Simon Edis from Ezone.com (artist and programmer, respectively, who used 3D Groove for their webgames.)
The assets used in Real Pool were recycled to make a web demo version, becoming the first use of the 3D Groove engine. Intended to promote the full game, the Real Pool web version used 3D Groove SX and was published on Shockwave.com, becoming their first 3D game, where it got between 5-6 million plays according to Laufenberg. Real Pool made over four million dollars in total sales according to Vice President of Marketing for Infogrames Paul Rinde. Real Pool was later recycled again into an advergame for Jack Daniels.
On March 8, 2000, Shockwave.com announced a partnership with 3D Groove Alliance to develop new games. One of these was Tank Wars, released Spring 2000, a game where you drive around the city playing as a tank destroying other tanks. The game got over 1.5 million plays per month.
From January 2001 to August 2003, Joseph Varet was 3D Groove's CEO.
On February 6, 2001, kpe and the 3D Groove Alliance announced a partnership. The first title they released under this partnership was Otto's Killer Carvin Snowboard for NickArcade.
On July 18, 2001, RealNetworks announced a distribution agreement with the 3D Groove Alliance for their RealArcade platform.
In February 2002, 3D Groove made a sequel to Real Pool called Real Pool 2, which became the first game to use the new 3D Groove GX engine version.
In early 2004 Peter Laufenburg left the 3D Groove Alliance.
The exact reason 3D Groove no longer exists is unknown, although one blog post on A Tree Falling in the Forest about Jules Urbach, who worked on 3D Groove, writes "[Jules Urbach] was kind of screwed by some nefarious folks involved in the [3D Groove Alliance] company." The 3D Groove Alliance, Inc. rebranded as OTOY, which is still around today, but the company has moved in an entirely different direction. They instead focus on their OctaneRender engine used to create photorealistic graphics from within 3D modeling tools such as Maya, and do not acknowledge the existence of 3D Groove or its games. No 3D Groove games are currently available for purchase.
Here is a list of 3D Groove's games and whether they are lost or not.
3D Groove Alliance, Inc. Originals
Original titles not based on a previously existing IP.
9MM: Beer Bottle Shootout - Found
Alien X - Found
Death From Above - Found
Impulse Skyracer - Found
Nothin' But Net - Found
Piscean - Found
Real Pool - Found
Real Pool 2 - Found
Infogrames also made a PS2 version of Real Pool. Although it shares a logo with Real Pool 2, Real Pool on the PS2 was not made in the 3D Groove engine. The PC version of Real Pool is an entirely different game.
Showdown: The gunfighting game - Found
Tank Wars - Found
3D Groove Alliance, Inc. Advergames
Games developed for other companies as an advertisement.
3D Groove FedEx Game - Existence Unconfirmed
At&T's Unlimited Challenge - Lost
Eight Legged Freaks - Found
Intel's Showdown: The gunfighting game - Unknown
Jack Daniels Real Pool - Lost
Jeep Disk Dodger - Existence Unconfirmed
Mazda: Skyracer Impulse - Unknown
Mountain Dew Skateboarding - Lost
Nesquik: Chocolate Mountain Challenge - Found
Pringles Pony Express - Lost
Pringles: Super Spud Boxing - Found
Radioshack: RC Stunt Machine Showdown - Lost
Powerpuff Girls: Showdown in the Sky - Found
Toonami: Trapped in Hyperspace - Lost
3D Groove Tarzan Game - Existence Unconfirmed
American Dragon: Robot Pandemonium - Unknown
Dunk Tank - Lost
JetiXtreme - Lost
Johnny Kapahala - Lost
Kim Possible: Middleton Mayhem - Lost
Oban Star Racers: Great Race - Lost
Yin Yang Yo: The Dangerous Comic Book of Dread - Lost
3D Groove games developed by Ezone.com
Farmer Giblet's Turkey Farm (Turkey 3D!) - Found
Lenny Loosejocks Boardin' - Found
Lenny Loosejocks in Snow Worries! - Found
Penguin Racers - Found
Santa Goes Buttboardin' 3D - Found
Super Mega Big Trucks - Arena - Found
Space Wombat - Found
3D Groove Games developed for Nickelodeon or Nick Jr.
All Grown Up Crazy Karts - Found
Adventures of Bleeposaurus - Found
Adventures of Bleeposaurus - Dragonfire - Found
Blues Clues: Joe's 3D Scavenger Hunt - Found
Danny Phantom Ghost Sweep - Found
Dora the Explorer 3-D Backpack Adventure - Found
Dora the Explorer 3D Driving Adventure - Found
Dora The Explorer 3-D Pyramid Adventure - Found
Dora 3D Soccer - Found
Jimmy Neutron Space Blast - Found
Otto's Killer Carvin Snowboard - Found
Rocket Power Big Air Mountain - Found
Spongebob Squarepants 3D Movie Game - Found
Spongebob Squarepants Pinball Panic - Found
Hey, Arnold! Runaway Bus - Found
Wild Thornberrys Movie Chopper Chase - Found
Animenace: Operation Phantom - Partially Found, Missing Level 4-5
Battle of the Planets: Zoltar's Revenge - Found
Cyobreed - Never Released (Cyobreed was never finished)
Leo's Great Day 2 - Found
Some early 3D Groove demos were created by Roddenberry.com as tech demos to show the capability of the 3D Groove engine.
OTOY Battle Space - Found
One of 3D Groove's games, "Spongebob Squarepants Saves the Krusty Krab"
- Link to a MEGA folder containing some found 3D Groove content, including games and Shockwave xtras. All games are for Windows unless otherwise specified.
- Joseph Varet's LinkedIn suggesting there was a FedEx advergame in the 3D Groove engine. No title is given.