now, in terms of where Ignition's at, at least in North America, I see the peers of the company
being companies like Atlus and XSEED -- in that range. But I get the impression
that the aspirations are larger. Can you talk about that sort of
SB: Right now we are definitely competing
for some of the same types of games that those two publishers are, just because
their philosophies are in line with us. You know: action RPGs, Japanese-style
games. But I think when you see, a year from now, the kind of games we're
announcing, it's not on the level of those publishers. It's something they
could never do.
RS: I think we've run past the aspiration
part, because we wouldn't be at the aspiration stage if we were going to
release what we are supposed to be releasing in 2010, you know? So I think
we're about already a year and a half past the aspiration, from that
AC: And you can see that. I don't think
they're making the type of IP or content that we're making. We are jumping to
RS: Yeah. It is the triple-A status, and a
repertoire of not one, but more than one game. That's going to arouse the curiosity
from that point. The combination of the passion of the team, the different
geographies, and UTV coming together, is really the USP.
it comes to geography, you're based in the UK, North America, and India.
RS: And Japan.
you have some Japanese operations too.
RS: And east and west. I mean, the
publishing office is here [in LA], but we've got something interesting in Florida,
it seems to me that there's a lot of different potential... both opportunities,
but also different strategies may be required. Do you have a global vision, or are there
RS: Actually it's not a different strategy:
the geographies have been driven by the talent pool, and the passion, and the
geography of people came in with the original IPs and the creative team. So the
strategy is the same in each of the studios, in all contexts.
SB: But I do think Ignition, in the last
few years, is in the transition from being primarily a European publisher to
seeing the U.S.
as the lead market. I think that's across the board. Europe's
still important, but the bleeding edge is here in the US.
was founded originally in the UK. [Addressing Ajay] By you and your brother.
AC: That's correct, yeah. Originally me and
Vijay. And I was shipped off to America.
hope it's not too painful.
RS: The jury's still out. So.
SB: I think he's becoming an American. It's
just a matter of time.
AC: I think we've realized how much of a
key market this is; this is why I came over here. With the type of passion that
drove the European team, I came out here to drive that same type of passion --
and you can tell by the team we've got.
You've got someone like Shane
Bettenhausen coming across to Ignition, which is not well known. He's a big
scoop for us. He's seen our vision, and I think that was probably one of the
key things for him to say, "You know, I'm going to come over." To the
dark side, people say, right?
SB: "The dark side", yeah, they
SB: Well, yeah. To make the transition from
editorial to publisher side, it's... Normally you don't go back.
AC: He had 7,000 Twitter followers. Since
he's moved to publishing, it's gone down to about four.
SB: No comment.
don't know how much your strategy revolves around releasing games in India, but Sony has been marketing the PlayStation
2 and it has some indigenous development for original IPs for that market. Is
that something that you're interested in too?
RS: I can't say we're not interested,
because that's a base for us, but actually this is not an India
play at all. If we had a first and foremost market, it's North
America. Second would be Japan.
Third would be Europe.
would be way past. It still has a ways to go there.
that Japan in terms of publishing, too?
RS: That's Japan
in terms of publishing. As Ajay just said, North
America is our deep focus.
AC: We've got three key territories to
concentrate on. U.S.
is probably the strongest at the moment; Japan
is second; Europe
is third. So, I think that's enough for us to handle.
SB: And the Japanese market is a unique
situation, different than the either two. That's one that requires very careful
calculation, to try to make a success with an enthusiast-based game in Japan.