Codex Gamicus

Backbone Entertainment is an independent video game development company located in Emeryville, California.

Backbone Entertainment is the result of a 2003 merger between Digital Eclipse Software and ImaginEngine. Digital Eclipse Software specialized in arcade game emulation and handheld video games, and formerly had studios in Emeryville, California and Vancouver, British Columbia. ImaginEngine specializes in children's software, formerly having studios in San Francisco, California and Boston, Massachusetts. The San Francisco and Emeryville teams were combined at the Emeryville location upon execution of the merger.

One of their first franchise projects as Backbone Entertainment was Death Jr., for the PSP. They have also produced a sequel, Death, Jr. II: Root of Evil, and a Nintendo DS version of the franchise entitled Death Jr. and the Science Fair of Doom. When Death Jr. was first announced, the CEO of Backbone spoke on making DJ a full-featured franchise, with comic books, a TV show, action figures, and more. Though many of theseTemplate:Which? have happened since the launch of the game, the success of the franchise overall is considered by someTemplate:Who? to be hampered by the mediocre qualityTemplate:According to whom? of the games themselves. According to, the average review score for the three games in the franchise is a 59%, with Death Jr. and the Science Fair of Doom scoring the lowest overall.

In 2005 the company merged with another video game developer, The Collective, Inc. in Newport Beach, CA to form a new conglomerate, Foundation 9 Entertainment.

The Foundation 9 Entertainment conglomerate initially used the Backbone Entertainment brand for its original titles, the Digital Eclipse brand for its arcade emulation titles, and ImaginEngine for many children's titles. Currently, the name ImaginEngine is used for products from the Boston-based studio of Foundation 9 Entertainment,[1] while Backbone Entertainment is used for their Emeryville, California-based studio. The Digital Eclipse brand is no longer in use, and its website redirects to Backbone Entertainment.[2]

An additional studio was formed in 2006 in Charlottetown, PEI, but was spun out in 2007 to become Other Ocean Interactive.[3] The Vancouver, British Columbia-based studio of Backbone Entertainment was scaled back in September 2008 and ultimately closed in May 2009, ending the company's presence in Canada.[4] Among that studio's later projects were Sonic Rivals and Sonic Rivals 2.

They developed Bomberman Live and Shrek N' Roll for the Xbox 360, Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 and Sega Genesis Collection for the PlayStation 2 and PlayStation Portable. They also created the Halo 3 interactive bonus disc included with Collector's and Legendary versions of the game.

Then, another studio was added, KnowWonder, formerly owned by Amaze Entertainment, best known for The Sims 2 DS and The Sims: Bustin' Out.

Games developed[]

Year Video game Platform(s) GameRankings score
2001 Spyro: Season of Ice Game Boy Advance 71.75%
2002 Spyro 2: Season of Flame Game Boy Advance 77.97%
2003 Spyro: Attack of the Rhynocs Game Boy Advance 74.50%
2004 Spider-Man 2 N-Gage 55.26%
2004 Grand Theft Auto: Advance Game Boy Advance 70.87%
2004 The Incredibles: Escape from Nomanisan Island PC
2005 Rifts: Promise of Power N-Gage 73.57%
2005 Death Jr. PSP 63.24%
2006 Age of Empires: The Age of Kings Nintendo DS 79.80%
2006 Charlotte's Web Nintendo DS, Game Boy Advance 61.00%
2006 Death Jr. II: Root of Evil PSP 70.65%
2006 NBA Ballers: Rebound PSP 69.78%
2006 Sonic Rivals PSP 65.95%
2006 MechAssault: Phantom War Nintendo DS 64.75%
2007 Bomberman Live XBLA 85.24%
2007 Death Jr. and the Science Fair of Doom Nintendo DS 50.62%
2007 Sonic the Hedgehog iPod
2007 Brooktown High PSP 49.11%
2007 Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix PSN, XBLA 84.00%
2007 Sonic Rivals 2 PSP 62.90%
2007 Shrek n' Roll XBLA 45.70%
2008 Monster Lab Wii 72.85%
2008 Death Jr. II: Root of Evil Wii 70.25%
2008 Wolf of the Battlefield: Commando 3 PSN, XBLA 67.36%
2008 1942: Joint Strike PSN, XBLA 71.03%
2008 Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix PSN, XBLA 88.75%
2009 Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection/Sega Mega Drive Ultimate Collection Xbox 360, PS3 81.11%
2009 Rock Band Unplugged PSP 80.03%
2009 Lego Rock Band Nintendo DS
2009 Marvel vs. Capcom 2 PSN, XBLA 83.81%



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