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Spicy Horse logo

Spicy Horse logo

Spicy Horse (Má là mǎ in Chinese) is an independent video game developer based in Shanghai. It was founded in 2007 by American McGee and it specializes in creating boutique games using rapid production techniques and high-end technology, focusing on story-telling and game art. Most of the titles released by Spicy Horse have been based on macabre re-imaginings of fairy tales and classic literature.

While Spicy Horse produces video games for home consoles, a subdivision of the company called Spicy Pony focuses on producing game apps for iOS.

Spicy Horse worked for Electronic Arts to create Alice: Madness Returns, the sequel to American McGee's Alice, and Alice: Otherlands.


In 2016, American McGee announced that the Shanghai studio of Spicy Horse Games is closing its doors. The company itself will remain intact and will continue to operate existing games online, but it is unlikely Spicy Horse will release further games. At Spicy Horse's peak, during development of Alice: Madness Returns, the studio contained 85+ people, but in 2016, only contains 6.[1]


Video games[]

  • American McGee's Grimm – a 23-part action-adventure series for the PC, based upon various fairy tales. It was initially distributed online by GameTap, and ran from July 31, 2008 to April 24, 2009.
  • Alice: Madness Returns – a platformer/action-adventure game released on June 14, 2011 for the PC, Mac, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360. The console versions also contained a downloadable version of the first Alice.
  • Akaneiro: Demon Hunters – An online RPG/action/horror MMO currently available on Steam and through the Spicy Horse website. It is based on the tale of Little Red Riding Hood with a unique Japanese Ero-inspired horror style.

iOS applications[]

  • DexIQ – A puzzle game released in December 2009 for the iPhone, and in June 2010 for the iPad.
  • Crooked House – A puzzle game based on the nursery rhyme There Was a Crooked Man, released in March 2010 for the iPhone, and June 2010 for the iPad.
  • Akaneiro – An interactive book and puzzle game based on Little Red Riding Hood, released in December 23, 2010 for the iPad.
  • Alice: Madness Returns Storybook – An interactive book promoting Alice: Madness Returns, released on May 20, 2011 for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch.

Key staff[]

  • American McGee – Founder, Senior Creative Director
  • R. J. Berg – Chief Operating Officer, Writer
  • Ken Wong – Art Director


  • In the first chapter of Alice: Madness Returns, there is a store named "The Flaming Stallion" in London's streets. It is synonymous to Spicy Horse.
  • At the very end of Chapter 3, before entering the Caterpillar's temple, there are two statues on the left and right. Going behind the one on the left while using Shrink Sense reveals the Spicy Horse logo on it.


  1. Closure of Shanghai Studio, Start of New Adventures. Retrieved on September 12, 2016.

External links[]