Danny Bilson talks what gamers want and how to make it

By Brenna Hillier, Sunday, 16 January 2011 21:50 GMT

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THQ’s Danny Bilson has said gamers want both “value for money” and “fresh experiences”, and that developers can balance commercial success with innovation.

Speaking to Gamezone in a two-part interview, Bilson commented that financial incentives such as those found in THQ Monstreal’s home province of Quebec, Canada directly translates into better games.

“It gives us the ability to put more on the screen and make a bigger and better game for the gamers. That’s really what it’s about because if we can do that, they will buy more and see the value in their $60.

“$60 is a lot to ask from somebody for an entertainment experience, so it’s our responsibility to give them the most value for their money.”

“Games are very expensive and people want fresh experiences,” he added.

When asked whether THQ’s licensed titles laid the financial basis for original IP such as Homefront, Bilson balked.

“I don’t think they make more money than I expect Homefront to make,” he said. “I expect it to sell more than WWE or UFC.”

“Building original IP is the focus for THQ,” he explained. “With that high quality and that kind of innovation will come revenue and the ability to make more, and make cooler stuff.

“In great success you can take more risks creatively and get back to your first question of more bold, innovative games. Although I think we’ve got some in the pipeline that are pretty bold and innovative, they are commercial also.”

Drawing an analogy with Hollywood, Bilson suggested that the industry’s current focus on sure-fire blockbusters can be partly attributed to fashion.

“It’s more like the film business in that in the 70s, the art films were big movies and the B-movies – the genre movies – were the little movies. Then it all kind of flipped after Star Wars and Jaws, etc. The B-movies became the big expensive movies, and the art films were king of cheap movies. It’s very tough – it’s just where the customers are.”

Thanks, Blue. Photo via Co-optimus.

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