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Activision “taking some of the biggest risks”; CEO responds to criticisms

Thursday, 26th September 2013 23:35 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Activision CEO Eric Hirshberg believes the publisher is one of the gutsiest in the business in terms of taking risks and being creative.

Speaking to Edge, Hirchberg said that Activision is what it is “a very focused company” whose “strategy is to do a few things and do them exceptionally well”, but that doesn’t mean it’s conservative.

“I think that sometimes people misperceive that as somehow being risk-averse, and yet we’re taking some of the biggest risks in new genres and new business models and new IPs than anybody,” he said.

“So the fact that we only do it a handful of times doesn’t lessen the fact there’s a lot of risk and complexity baked into anything new you try.”

The executive pointed to Skylanders as an example.

“Skylanders is a brand that didn’t exist eighteen months ago – people forget that already because it’s been so successful. It was not only a new IP, but a new genre of play that was totally unproven,” he said.

Hirshberg also said Activision has made a “big investment” in Destiny, which is another new kind of game.

The CEO seemed content for Activision to keep doing what it’s doing, and for other parties – especially indies – to foster innovation on a different scale.

“It’s great for the creativity of the medium. I think if you look at every other art form there’s room for blockbusters and there’s room for an independent scene in films and in music,” he said.

“The same has always been true in games but because the process of developing and publishing is so much more complex, generally it has been hard, but one of the things I really appreciate about both the first parties with this next generation is that they’re handing the tools over to independent developers, making it easier for them to publish and get their ideas out there.”

Thanks, Gamespot.

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10 Comments

  1. DSB

    Hah. Yeah. Funding Bungie is such a risk.

    “GOSH, I SURE HOPE THIS SELLS!”

    #1 11 months ago
  2. fearmonkey

    Thats a joke for sure….

    #2 11 months ago
  3. darthroseman

    Skylanders is an entirely new IP. Except that, you know, it was a Spyro game originally… I love that he said just because they don’t take a lot of risks they still are risk takers. Sometimes I let my gas tank get kinda close to empty. I’m a risk taker.

    #3 11 months ago
  4. JimFear-666

    oh yeah, a call of duty every year with a 10yrs old engine is verry gutsy

    #4 11 months ago
  5. salarta

    Pffthahahaha

    #5 11 months ago
  6. BrahManDude

    umm i don’t think so, they have a kids milk money game, and 2 FPS games what’s the risk in that

    #6 11 months ago
  7. voxelman

    @1 spending ~$200m on a new IP is pretty risky yea

    #7 11 months ago
  8. DSB

    @7 It’s a Bungie shooter. Gimme a break dude. They’re golden and they know it.

    Skylanders was a much bigger risk, but credit where credit is due though, Activision are absolutely excellent at picking winners.

    #8 11 months ago
  9. Llewelyn_MT

    I’m sure Skylanders will still be their excuse of being risk takes in 2025 when they release CoD MW11…

    #9 11 months ago
  10. bobnice

    Ah hahaha! Dont make me laugh…too late.

    #10 11 months ago

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