Starbreeze Studios CEO Mikael Nermark spoke to EDGE recently about their upcoming project, P13, and the nature of the industry. The developer recently acquired Overkill Software, developers of Payday: The Heist, a budget-priced title with an interesting premise and good reception. Starbreeze is usually noted for its usually excellent AAA FPS titles like the Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay and the Darkness.
Nermark confirmed that Starbreeze is working on Payday 2, a follow up to Overkill’s title, a “cheap-to-play” title called Cold Mercury and described P13 as a project that may or may not be an FPS. All three are not AAA games but will be lower-priced games.
Without calling out Crytek specifically, Nermark stated that the company would never bet on only one business model and said that they would work on these cheap-to-play titles between AAA games since relying on one business model is “risky”. He states that the company would never go the free-to-play route because that would mean they “have to cater to everyone out there—that’s costly and hard.”
It’s really not a bad idea for a smaller studio like Starbreeze to go this route. The rise of indie titles has shown that moderately priced games can do exceptionally well, literally hoisting five guys in a garage to multimillionaire industry darlings overnight. Why can’t a smaller studio with an established pedigree of innovate and high quality games do the same?