Sony Santa Monica studio head Shannon Studstill has said the developer is lucky to be able to produce games driven by creativity, rather than purely business interests.
“[Game design decision making] really needs to be driven by the creative. We are not a studio, nor are we a company, that has the publisher mentality driving the creative decisions within the franchise,” Studstill told Gamasutra.
“That happens at the team level, and we cherish that ability that Sony gives us. It’s certainly something at Sony Santa Monica that we take advantage of. We want the visionary in there making those types of decisions.”
The executive said that upper management does have to get involved eventually, to make decisions regarding expense.
“How many people are we going to need to throw at that new thing, and what is the future of that new feature? What does that maybe open up down the line that we didn’t have before? All of that stuff is highly scrutinized,” she said.
Sony Santa Monica is probably best known for the God of War series, but also serves as one of Sony’s flagship teams, incubating smaller teams like thetgamecompany and Super Bot, and lending expertise to first-party Sony teams around the world.