How Platinum Games is changing up its approach to game dev
"In the early days of Platinum Games, you would create a team for a project and then that team would work on that project from start to finish. But we’re starting to see more of a fluid pattern recently."
- Platinum Games cofounder Hideki Kamiya, speaking to IGN last month.
The fifth annual BitSummit game festival took place in Osaka, Japan last month, and since the HQ of Platinum Games (Nier: Automata, Star Fox Zero) is also in Osaka, a handful of Platinum devs wound up sitting down with IGN to talk about the studio's future.
The result is a broad feature published on IGN today that includes a few interesting anecdotes about how the studio is changing up the way it makes games. For example, devs might be curious to read that until relatively recently, Platinum typically established set teams for each project rather than having team members move on and off projects as necessary.
"In the early days of Platinum Games, you would create a team for a project and then that team would work on that project from start to finish," said studio cofounder Hideki Kamiya, who most recently led development on the cancelled Xbox One game Scalebound.
"But we’re starting to see more of a fluid pattern recently because we have different skill sets among the team. We have certain staff who are really good at one common element that’s needed for each project, such as getting the action controls to feel right. They’ll set that up and then they’ll move onto the next project. And so we can move people around and it helps us cover our projects with fewer people."
That's especially significant when you consider that Platinum has a reputation for tackling multiple projects in tandem, and currently claims to have nearly 200 people on staff. Later in the interview Kamiya goes on to say he thinks game dev teams work best when everyone has a voice in the game's design, regardless of their role.
"This is part of Platinum’s fabric as well as my own, but the idea is that every member of the team is a game designer," he said. "So an artist should not only draw artwork and a programmer should not only program code, but every member should look at the game we are making and contribute their ideas for how to make it better."
For more on how Platinum works and where it hopes to go, told in the words of those who work there, check out the full IGN feature.