OverviewBugbear Entertainment is an independent game development studio located in Helsinki, Finland. The company was founded in March 2000 by Janne Alanenpää, Tatu Blomberg and a number of friends. It was initially funded by one of the producers / designers (Alanenpää's neighbour) at Carts Entertainment Oy Ltd., a company that was closed soon after the release of Thrust Twist + Turn in 1999 and they still own Bugbear to this day. Many of the initial people at Bugbear knew each other since they were teenagers and worked together as the demoscene group Byterapers.
Bugbear exclusively creates racing games and its first release was Rally Trophy for JoWooD in 2001. The first game the studio worked on was Hat Trick Hockey, not a racing game, but it was never released. After Tough Trucks: Modified Monsters in 2003, the studio became best known for the FlatOut arcade racing series. They released FlatOut in 2004, FlatOut 2 in 2006 and FlatOut: Ultimate Carnage in 2007. When the franchise's publisher Empire Interactive Entertainment collapsed, the rights to the series were lost and sold to Strategy First, Inc. who had other development studios create further games in the series. Meanwhile Bugbear had also created Glimmerati for N-Gage in 2005 and on the PSP SEGA Rally Revo for SEGA in 2007.
Bugbear then turned its racing expertise to the Ridge Racer series for Namco Bandai Games. They created Ridge Racer Unbounded (2012) as well as the free-to-play game Ridge Racer Driftopia (2013).
In February 2013 Next Car Game was announced, a new racing title and the first independent release for the studio. After launching a tentative funding initiative in September, they launched a full Kickstarter crowd funding campaign in November. As the $350,000 goal would not be reached, they cancelled the campaign at the end of the month and took it to the Steam distribution portal where it was released in the Early Access program.
Contributed by Jeanne (75508) on May 15, 2008. [revised by : lewuz (183) and Sciere (294219)].