We spoke with the CEO and founder of Kaneva, Christopher Klaus, about the company and what they’re trying to do in the gaming industry. Not only did we learn what Kaneva is all about, but we also got to find out what the heck “kaneva” means.

As with every interview, our questions are in bold.

Kaneva is a relatively new company, so people may not know who you are. Could you give us a description of what Kaneva is and how it will affect the lives of your target customers?

Kaneva is the world’s first online digital entertainment marketplace where customers can watch, play, create, and market films and games.

We believe we are revolutionizing the industry by providing a unique, online destination where customers can download, watch, and own a wide range of DVD-quality movies, play online games, and participate in a dynamic community of entertainment enthusiasts. We have also built a complete technology platform for creating online games while giving game creators and filmmakers a new way to directly distribute and sell their work. This is a fundamentally new business model that makes Kaneva unique. In the past game developers and film makers have been held back by large infrastructure and the need for significant capital in order to enjoy mainstream success. We are removing those barriers and opening up the possibility for worldwide recognition and money earning potential for anyone with a passion for creating games, films or other forms of digital media.

The biggest product you have right now appears to be the Kaneva Game Platform. Could you describe what it is and what it does?

The Kaneva Game Platform enables those interested in developing their own game to easily and quickly create, with no upfront investment, high-end, multi-genre, Massively Multi-Player Online Games (MMOGs). Kaneva then hosts the games, enabling game creators to gain immediate exposure and royalties while maintaining control of their content. The platform is freely downloadable, feature-rich and includes a client, Kaneva Game Studio, artificial intelligence and server components. The platform includes fully-featured menus, Python and Lua scripting, and comprehensive help with tutorials and videos. Using Kaneva’s platform combined with its Managed Game Services, game creators can get games to market faster with richer content at a much lower cost. We also offer another freely downloadable product called the Kaneva Media Launcher. This enables film makers and video creators to easily publish content on the Kaneva web site, gaining immediate distribution, recognition and the ability to earn significant royalties for their work. Kaneva Publishing is compatible with most BitTorrent client programs so that users can take advantage of BitTorrent technology to rapidly and simultaneously publish multiple files. These technologies are core components of our business model and mission to empower digital creators to fulfill their passions and earn recognition and money, removing the barriers of traditional distribution.

Right now the Game Platform is only available for Windows. Will there be a version for Mac OS X or Linux sometime in the future?

Our goal is to first be successful offering our Kaneva Game Platform on the Windows platform. As we reach our goal and better understand the needs of our user base, we will definitely look at expanding the platform to Mac OS and Linux as well as PSP and the next-generation consoles.

The Kaneva Game Platform only supports 3D Studio Max files. Will there be support for other formats in the future?

We are currently looking into several options around supporting formats other than 3D Studio Max. What is most important to us is that more people are able to fulfill their dream of creating a game and that those games are successful. With this in mind, we will always strive to offer the best technology.

I noticed on your site that you will host a server for the developers. Tell me how that process works.

Distribution and hosting are two of the biggest barriers that exist today in MMO game development. Distribution is also a major barrier for film makers today. At Kaneva, we offer game developers a fully featured, freely downloadable platform to easily and quickly create games along with Managed Game Services so that game developers can focus on making great games, bringing them to market quickly, and earning sizeable royalties for their work.

Once game development is complete or in beta, developers utilize Kaneva’s Managed Game Services for game distribution and hosting. These services also include billing, tracking and security – basically everything you need to successfully host and earn money for your online game. We also provide the developer with an opportunity to earn up to 70% royalties based on revenue size. Our Managed Game Services eliminate the need for developers to make expensive investments in the infrastructure needed to run an MMO.

Will you be targeting small development teams, or approaching larger companies with this technology as well?

We want to empower everyone passionate about the goal of developing their own game to actually create a game and profit from it. From mod teams to individual developers to large studios, we are lowering the bar and enabling more people to realize their dream of building their own game.

How will Kaneva be encouraging people to participate within the community?

It is our goal to inspire an organic-like growth of the Kaneva community. We believe that if we give people a voice, ways to easily get involved and give feedback as well as great technology and services, than the community will grow itself and be valuable and entertaining to many. We have designed the site from its inception to be a place where community is valued. From forums to blogs to ratings and active feedback requests, we seek to have an open dialog with Kaneva members and to encourage them to connect with each other as well as the game developers, filmmakers and other creative community members behind the wide variety of content featured on Kaneva.

Everything appears to be free, or based around Kaneva Points in your communities. What’s the business model here? How will you be profiting from this venture?

Today, Kaneva is offering a great deal of “free” content in order to give our customers an easy way to see the value of our site and services. While there will most likely always be free content, we anticipate that as more and more content is posted, and our base of Kaneva members grows significantly, more content creators will move towards a paid content model on our site. K-Points are Kaneva’s currency system of choice, giving Kaneva members a credit system to use when watching a movie, buying a computer art asset or playing an online game. When content is sold on Kaneva, the content creator and Kaneva earn royalties versus a one time commission. Today traditional retail publishing royalties for films and games are typically between 10% – 30%. Kaneva starts at 50% with a variable rate increase up to 70% based on revenue size.

Is there anything else you want to say?

Kaneva is Latin for “canvas”. We want to empower people passionate about digital entertainment to create and share their original work with the world, earning recognition and money. The biggest challenge in entertainment especially for games and movies has been distribution. Kaneva offers those who create digital media with an instant distribution platform, opening up their work to a wider audience and engaging them in a dynamic online community for sharing information, viewpoints and engaging with their audience.

Thanks again to Christopher Klaus for his time and everyone at Kaneva for building such a cool product. I’m looking forward to the products that will come out of this company.

Provided by Geekstreak