In Gamasutra's latest feature, Eidos Montreal (Deus Ex: Human Revolution) head Stéphane D'Astous argues that reviving IPs can replace the necessity of taking risks on new ones.
Discussing fears about creative stagnation with triple-A titles, D'Astous points out that a few years ago, many publishers presumed their customers wouldn't always stick around to buy their sequels. Those companies believed they needed to focus more on new IPs to keep their audiences.
"The buzzword I remember at [Electronic Arts] three, four years ago, is a 'we need to spit out three new IPs per year' kind of thing. It was a buzzword," says the Eidos Montreal general manager.
"In our case, maybe we haven't produced new IPs, but a major relaunch of a title like Deus Ex and Thief, we considered it almost like a new IP, certainly in the effort," adds D'Astous. "So we bring back something from the cult classics."
His studio's relaunch of Deus Ex last year was well received for modernizing the eleven-year-old series. "This is maybe not considered new IP, but it brings a new flavor," he says. "Games are more and more sophisticated; it's less based on one or two mechanics. I think this replaces the necessity of having new IPs."
D'Astous says he's hearing fewer publishers continuing their mantras about the importance of new IPs, as evidenced by the popularity of recent sequels for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, Gears of War, Assassin's Creed, and Mass Effect.
"Innovation and ideas are important, but if you're able to bring forward an existing IP to bring new types of experiences, I think people will buy them, because they know they can relate to a franchise they've played before," he continues.
The full feature interview, in which D'Astous talks about building Eidos Montreal and the studio's relationship with its owner Square Enix, is live now on Gamasutra.