🐳 How many games has Beethoven been credited on? (answer)

Factor 5 GmbH

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Based in San Rafael, California, originally founded in Cologne (Germany) in 1987 and privately held, Factor 5 LLC is a developer of interactive entertainment software and technology for a variety of console and computer platforms.

The team members come from the hacker scene and demo programming. They originally called themselves Light Circle, but then changed their name to avoid associations with their not-so-legal past, and since there were 5 members it became Factor 5. The first project was the Amiga game Katakis (1988), an R-Type clone. They were sued by Activision Europe for copying the concept, and were only allowed to hold on to the right to sell the game if they did the Amiga conversion for R-Type. They complied, and after that, they programming the scrolling 2D shoot-em-up Turrican for the Amiga, inspired by Metroid and Contra. The game did remarkably well, so they created a sequel and then pondered porting it to other systems and consoles.

In 1991, the team members decided to give up their studies and officially open the company. Another reason was they needed to have the status of an official company to receive a development system fro Nintendo. They went on to create many sequels to and conversions of Turrican, for consoles such as the Genesis and the SNES as well. In those years, they received financial backing from Softgold (Europe).

They ended up in San Rafael when they met a new Lucasfilm Games producer in 1989: Kalani Streicher. At the time, Factor 5 did the German localization of Lucasfilm Games, of which Softgold was the distributor, and they visited the Skywalker Ranch in the US to sort out localization issues. They met again at the CES in 1992, where Kalani told the members he was impressed with Super Turrican on the SNES, and offered them a project at the company.

There were six to choose from, and they picked Indiana Jones' Greatest Adventures (SNES). It was the first time they worked with a big license and a strict schedule. Next, Sony's PlayStation was launched and because they were quite tech-savvy, they were offered to do a PSX game for LucasArts. They made a modern version of BallBlazer: Ballblazer Champions, but had a hard time developing the game, because they had never done 3D before. The next project was the PSX conversion of Star Wars: Rebel Assault II - The Hidden Empire.

In 1998, they turned to the Nintendo 64 console, as they preferred working with cartridges. They created Star Wars: Rogue Squadron 3D, Star Wars: Episode I - Battle for Naboo and the N64 port of Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine. At that time, they were also working on a modern version of Turrican: Thornado, similar to One, but the game was first moved to the GameCube, and later cancelled. They couldn't name the game Turrican as Softgold still held the rights.

Factor 5 has also created the multi-platform MusyX’ sound tool technology which pioneered 5-channel Dolby Surround Pro-Logic II sound for games in close collaboration with Dolby, the DivX’ video toolset for multiple game platforms, and, as a Nintendo technology partner, was involved in the creation of the Nintendo GameCube hardware.

For the GameCube, they continued with the Star Wars license, creating Star Wars: Rogue Squadron II - Rogue Leader and Star Wars: Rogue Squadron III - Rebel Strike.

In 2004, Factor 5 announced to start developing for next-gen consoles. In 2005, Factor 5 announced it would move away from producing franchise games and start developing their own IP.

They have become an exclusive partner of Sony Computer Entertainment of America and held up their reputation of stretching the limits of any new system with the release of a title for the PlayStation 3: Lair in September of 2007.

Recently, Factor 5 has incorporated in the State of California and is now going under the name of Factor 5, Inc.

Credited on 38 Games from 1988 to 2022

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Turrican Anthology Vol. I (2022 on PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch)
Turrican Anthology Vol. II (2022 on PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch)
Turrican Flashback (2021 on PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch)
Disney•Pixar Ratatouille (2007 on Game Boy Advance)
Lair (2007 on PlayStation 3)
Crazy Frog Racer (2005 on Game Boy Advance)
Spider-Man 2 (2004 on Game Boy Advance)
Dr. Seuss: Green Eggs and Ham (2003 on Game Boy Advance)
Star Wars: Rogue Squadron III - Rebel Strike (2003 on GameCube)
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002 on Game Boy Color)
Muppet Pinball Mayhem (2002 on Game Boy Advance)
Little League Baseball 2002 (2002 on Game Boy Advance)
Star Wars: Rogue Squadron II - Rogue Leader (2001 on GameCube)
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001 on Game Boy Color)
No Rules: Get Phat (2001 on Game Boy Advance)
Alone in the Dark: The New Nightmare (2001 on Game Boy Color)
Tweenies: Doodles' Bones (2001 on Game Boy Color)
Star Wars: Episode I - Battle for Naboo (2000 on Windows, Nintendo 64)
Sabrina: The Animated Series - Zapped! (2000 on Game Boy Color)
Maya the Bee: Garden Adventures (2000 on Game Boy Color)

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History +


The MusyX sound-system is finished for the N64 and PC platforms, a program used to ease the integration of sound in games.


Work is started on the Nintendo 64. Factor 5 develops proprietary speech compression and sound tools for the N64. Based on these efforts, Nintendo grants access to highly proprietary Microcode information and development environment.

May 1996

Company moves to San Rafael, California.


After working as a small team for a few years, the members decide to give up their studies and officially "open" the company.


Company founded in Germany.

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Trivia +

The "Pegasus system", a development system consisting of custom built hardware and custom assemblers and tools, which they started to work on in 1987, is later adapted to the Atari ST and in 1992 implemented on Super Famicom/Super Nintendo and Mega Drive.

Factor 5 came from the demo programming, hacker scene in the 80's. Their first game was Katakis for the Amiga, released in 1988. A game showing some similarities in gameplay to R-Type. Funny to note, that Activision Europe sued them at once, as they held the rights for R-Type (would the same tactics be used today, eg., id Software could basically sue every company releasing a 3D shooter).

However, it became more ridiculous, taken from an interview with Julian Eggebrecht: "...Activision Europe (a completely different company from today's Activision) promptly sued us, since they held the rights for R-Type (laughs). And for the right to keep selling Katakis, we had to -- this is pretty funny -- we had to do the official R-Type conversion for Amiga because Activision couldn't find any programmers. So they threatened to sue us if we didn't do the conversion. Quite frankly, that was a dream come true for us -- we never expected anything like that. We all came from the hacker scene, demo programming, back in the 80s. To be able to do R-Type for such a big company, that was simply incredible. Those were three brutal months. First R-Type, then Turrican. And Turrican turned into a gigantic success in Europe."

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