Square Enix Collective

Square Enix came to Contra with an idea to create a new crowdfunding platform specifically geared towards the independent games market. With such a great idea being backed by a powerhouse in the gaming industry, Contra knew it was a fantastic opportunity to create something revolutionary.

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Collective was born out of a combination of factors; most importantly the existing gaming community that surrounded Square Enix. They have some of the best supporters any company could ask for; very active and always eager to get involved in providing feedback. Like all smart industry players, Square recognised that a great way to innovate and create fantastic products is to listen to those people who already love your product.

The platform follows a simple four-stage process, that lead to the most supported games being crowdfunded and developed.

Contra built the platform using an Agile software approach with Ruby on Rails, MySQL, Unicorn, Nginx and Ubuntu as the technology stack. Contra identified the key user stories, prioritised them and completed them in two-week sprints, with regular demos to Square Enix. This approach meant that Contra could deploy the platform in two phases; the first with a limited amount of projects and functionality and the second with fuller functionality and with public submissions open.

Collective has been well received by industry and fans alike, and the platform has worked well with Square Enix looking to enhance it in the future, based on ideas from the community.

“Contra was entrusted with one of our most challenging projects to-date – a user-generated self-publishing platform that enables developers worldwide to access the site’s CMS and submit game pitches; and then the community to vote for their favourite projects and submit feedback… all of that culminating in a white-label feed from crowdfunding partner Indiegogo. Sounds complicated? It is – but Contra made it seem like a breeze, and the launch was one of the smoothest we’ve seen. Great service, great ideas and fantastic to work with, I look forward to working with them for a long time as we keep evolving the platform.”

Phil Elliott, Project Lead, Square Enix Collective.

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