Former Midway exec feels firms need to kill and greenlight projects faster to avoid THQ’s fate

By Stephany Nunneley, Tuesday, 29 January 2013 18:02 GMT

Former Midway Games VP of business development and licensing, Lee Jacobson, has said companies should be quicker when it comes to greenlighting or killing projects in order avoid sharing Midway and THQ’s fate.

Speaking during the GameON: Finance conference in Toronto, via GI International, Jacobson said THQ’s final months was like Midway’s history being repeated, and in order to squelch such downfalls, publishers shouldn’t be afraid to cancel games which aren’t shaping up or be overly cautious when greenlighting new projects.

“The two hardest things to do in a publishing company are to get a game greenlit, and to get a game killed,” he said. “Because everybody has capitalized development expenses. Once you went on the hook and stuck your neck out, most publishers aren’t going to expense that because they have to take the hit in the quarter they stop the project.

“I can’t tell you how many times we kept SpyHunter 3 going when we never should have kept SpyHunter 3 going because we had $12 million capitalized on budget.”

Jacobson was recently with Atari until September 2012, and left to start an analytics firm called Apmetrix, which focuses on mobile games and apps.

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