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Insomniac's Price: Sony Relationship Very Positive, Can 'See The Other Side Too'

Insomniac's Price: Sony Relationship Very Positive, Can 'See The Other Side Too'

November 14, 2008 | By Staff, Christian Nutt

November 14, 2008 | By Staff, Christian Nutt
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More: Console/PC

As part of an in-depth new Gamasutra interview, Insomniac CEO Ted Price has been discussing the Resistance/Ratchet & Clank developer's exclusive 10-year relationship with Sony, suggesting that for platform exclusives, "Sony is going to market the hell out of your games", but also noting of multiplatform possibilities: "We see the other side too."

Discussing the Burbank-based company's unique relationship with Sony, which has published and marketed all of Insomniac's recent games exclusively on Sony hardware platforms, Price explained the history of the relationship:

"In fact, Spyro the Dragon -- that was actually quote-unquote "published" by Universal Studios, and Universal sub-licensed the rights to Spyro to Sony. And had it not been for that occurrence, we probably wouldn't be around, because Sony marketed the hell out of that game, and made it a household name.

But, for the last ten years or so, we have been working very closely with Sony. And, I know what you're getting at -- I mean, people ask me all the time, 'So, do you consider going multiplatform? What are the drawbacks?'"

When further quizzed on the reasons that Insomniac would continue to stay platform-exclusive with titles such as the Resistance franchise, Price noted:

"There are certainly benefits and there are drawbacks to it. The benefits are that our games tend to be associated with the hardware -- but that could be a drawback, too.

So, with Resistance: Fall of Man, because we were a launch title, we did get a lot of additional exposure simply because it was synonymous with the PlayStation 3. And it's hard to break into the genre; and it's cool that we were able to do it with a brand new entry."

In conclusion on this subject, the Insomniac CEO mused on having significant autonomy in the Sony/Insomniac relationship, a major plus, but did reference a multiplatform approach as tempting:

"A lot of people at Insomniac have come from other shops, where either they've been a part of a publisher, or they've been at a developer owned by a publisher, and they've told me that it can be frustrating to have a publisher acting with a heavy hand.

Our relationship with Sony is one where we develop autonomously. Sony certainly gives us great feedback on the games, but we're in control of the development process, and that is a great place to be. Especially with a partner as powerful as Sony...

But, then again, we see the other side too. We see games that are multiplatform succeeding wildly, and doing great, and that too is a fantastic place to be."

You can now read the full Gamasutra feature on the subject, including lots more detail on the creation of Resistance 2, the development methodology used at the studio, and the status of Insomniac's new North Carolina-based studio.

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