After Fallout 4, Bethesda aims to even out its rocky release schedule
"We ultimately want to build to a point where we are doing three or four big titles a year. I would prefer not to be in the same place we were in in 2011, where we had four titles and then went super quiet."
- Bethesda's Pete Hines lays out the publisher's plan to even out its release schedule.
Publisher/developer Bethesda Softworks is enjoying a surge in popular acclaim this summer, due in large part to a strong showing at its inaugural E3 showcase. During the event Bethesda laid out release windows for a number of its high-profile games (including Fallout 4 and Doom) and, surprisingly, released its first mobile title on the spot -- the remarkably successful Fallout Shelter.
But amidst this wave of goodwill, Bethesda PR exec Pete Hines has been speaking to the press about the company's desire to even out its release schedule (it hasn't released a standout game since Skyrim in 2011) and how it tries to benefit from having a diverse crew of developers like Arkane Studios, Tango Gameworks, and id Software serving one banner.
"We are getting to the point where these studios that we have acquired have now put a thing out, figured out how they work together and are starting to hit a bit more consistency," he recently told MCV. "We are pretty aware of who we are and we ultimately want to build to a point where we are doing three or four big titles a year."
What may be more interesting, from a developer's perspective, is Hines' recent comments to Metro UK about exactly how these studios work together and share information.
"When we have games in development we send certain builds or milestones along the way to people at all of the other studios, as part of our playtesting. So guys at Id will play The Evil Within, guys at MachineGames will play it, guys at ZeniMax Online will play it," he told a Metro reporter. "Not the whole studio, and obviously if you were to go to Todd Howard’s [Fallout 4] team right now and [say], ‘Hey, can you playtest this they [would] say 'Yes, I’d love to play Doom but I was here working for 18 hours yesterday!'"
Both interviews are worth reading if you're curious about how Bethesda perceives itself in relation to the game industry as a whole, and the Metro interview in particular includes much deeper commentary from Hines about how Bethesda is responding to popular criticisms as it prepares to ship Fallout 4 later this year.