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Starbreeze: GAME Troubles Hurt Syndicate Sales

Matt Gardner
EA Games, FPS games, GAME, Mikel Nermark, Starbreeze, Syndicate

Starbreeze: GAME Troubles Hurt Syndicate Sales

Starbreeze's CEO Mikel Nermark has suggested that the turmoil of the UK retail market last month, centred around the troubles that swamped specialist retailer GAME, hurt the sales of Starbreeze's FPS reboot - Syndicate.

"There's so many reasons why a game succeeds or fails from a commercial point-of-view.," Nermark said, talking with GI.biz. "We released the game about a month or more ago, and we're doing our post-mortem right now: what did we do right, what did we do wrong, and of course we will look at the commercial side as well."

EA launched the game in February, a month or so before pulling support from the ailing purple retailer, GAME, with a lack of credit insurance making the specialist too much of a risky partner at the time.

"The numbers are not as high as we would like," continued Nermark, "and I think if you asked anyone they would say the same thing about any game they made. But [Syndicate] was released in the midst of GAME going under; the retail space is hurting, and I think that hurt us because we were such a retail product."

The key to survival, though, in Nermark's mind at least, is owning one's IP, and that new IP will be the way forward for Starbreeze (who have two such projects in development currently), although not necessarily in a traditionally AAA space.

"If you look at any successful studio out there, they own IP, they have done their own games," he said. "Look at Valve, Epic, Crytek. They believed in their own ideas, they had a lot of passion for what they did, and they succeeded. To be a successful studio you have to take charge of your own destiny by owning your own IP.

I don't think big publishers are resistant to new IP. They just want to see something new. We are always asking what innovation can we bring to games; what's new that we can bring to the table. We just need to try harder. If you look at AAA games today most are quite similar, and I think we can do much, much more."

Add a comment7 comments
DivideByZero  Apr. 16, 2012 at 12:24

So, GAME are being used as a scapegoat then? That makes perfect sense... players of the game must have gone through such a hard time buying the game that they decided to score it 5.3 on metacritic.

A poorly executed reboot that doesn't cater for the fans will never sell very well. Reboots, if done well (think SSX) will do very well indeed.

F-, must try harder.

Goonboy7777  Apr. 16, 2012 at 12:36

The game sucking didnt help either.

hurrakan  Apr. 16, 2012 at 12:36

*golf clap*

Pankratz  Apr. 16, 2012 at 13:05

Starbreeze better stick to Riddick universum and everyone will be happy ;)

stevenjameshyde  Apr. 16, 2012 at 13:40

Game's woes were no doubt responsible for it bombing in the US as well

phil16  Apr. 16, 2012 at 13:47

Maybe if it didn't just appear to be just another FPS it might have done better. It annoys me how so many strategy game titles are now being redone as FPS's. (Close combat being another one I dearly miss that was turned into a dire FPS). How about releasing strategy titles as strategy titles?

Breadster  Apr. 16, 2012 at 13:55

Totally generic fps, can't believe they're trying to blame game for it.

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