Deep Silver “much better” than big publishers because it turns a profit

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 23:18 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Deep Silver boss Geoff Mulligan has said that the Koch media-owned publisher is doing much better than big, triple-A publishers because it actually makes money.

“People say, ‘Oh, you acquired Volition and Metro, you’re going to be a triple-A publisher. What separates us from a triple-A publisher is that I don’t really have a desire to be a triple-A publisher,” the COO said in the May print edition of GameInformer, via Videogamer.

“I actually think we’re much better than the Activisions, EAs, and Ubisofts of the world. People say, ‘What do you mean? They are valued at three billion dollars.’ I say the difference is that we make money.”

Deep Silver has been publishing games since 2002 and has hundreds of titles to its name, but really came into the spotlight after the sudden, runaway success of Dead Island in 2011. Now, it’s something of a weel known name, having picked up 4A Games and Volition Inc in THQ’s collapse.

“With the acquisition of Metro and Saints Row, it allows us to, again, go from strength to strength. But do I want to hire 500 people and build a world headquarters? That’s not what we do – nor is it what we need to do,” Mulligan said.

“I firmly believe that you do not need a giant organization anymore. That’s what’s killing so many publishers. The moment you don’t have a giant, triple-A hit, your overhead absolutely eats you alive. What do you do if this big, triple-A game didn’t hit? You’ve got to ship another one very quickly and hope that one does.”

Deep Silver is part of a privately-held company, and does not have to answer to investors. The executive said this allows the smaller, more agile company to react quickly to shifts in the industry.

“We’re a publisher that, in a difficult and rapidly evolving marketplace, uses guerilla tactics. We move quickly and we don’t have a public board of directors to answer to. We like what we do and have fun,” he said.

“That’s important. You go to some of these companies – you probably have good friends at some of these companies. You go hang out with them, and they are miserable or they are frightened. I think our people are having a really good time.”

Mulligan said Deep Silver didn’t know Dead Island would be such a hit, and credits its success to luck and good marketing that larger companies wouldn’t try. The sequel, Dead Island: Riptide, is headed to PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in late April.