In an effort to reduce its reliance on other developers, Netflix has established its first in-house game development studio. Marko Lastikka, formerly of Zynga and EA, will serve as director of the new Helsinki-based firm.
According to reports, the studio would develop “world-class” games free of advertisements and in-app sales. Netflix has traditionally acquired preexisting studios. It’s the first ground-up construction project.
Night School Studio, creators of Oxenfree, and Next Games, creators of The Walking Dead mobile game (both acquired in March) are two examples. But this new firm won’t be releasing games for quite some time.
Amir Rahimi, Vice President of Game Studios, stated in a press release that this was “another step in our vision to build a world-class games studio that will bring a variety of delightful and deeply engaging original games — with no ads and no in-app purchases” to the company’s hundreds of millions of members around the world.
“We’re just getting started, and there’s a lot more to do before Netflix users can enjoy a top-notch gaming service. Making a video game can take a long time, so I’m pleased with how our first year has gone in laying the groundwork for our game studios and can’t wait to show off our work in the years to come.”
The Netflix mobile app now offers access to a selection of previously released films and TV shows. However, a recent study found that only 1% of Netflix members regularly engage with the service’s games.
And yet, Netflix is gradually integrating social aspects into its gaming service, with game handles already available in titles like Into The Breach. Furthermore, recent job postings have hinted at an increase in Netflix’s gaming offerings.
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