After Saber Interactive's exit from the Swedish Embracer Group holding, the company's CEO Matthew Karch is actively communicating with the press. This time, in an interview with GamesIndustry, he shared his thoughts on the cost of AAA games and their development.

Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine 2

  • Karch considers the price tag of $70 per game too high. He noted that the industry has plenty of examples of much cheaper games that have achieved success. One of them is Helldivers 2.
  • "The success of Helldivers 2 is partly due to the fact that it is sold at a much lower price and is available to players. Five years ago, all anyone could hear was about the next Assassin's Creed, Call of Duty, Far Cry, Battlefield or some other major game. The whole industry was waiting for their release with bated breath, they were "juggernauts". But now you see Palworld, Helldivers 2 and Valheim coming out and killing them. People understand that you can make great games and not sell them at a price that will empty someone's bank account," Karch said.
  • Karch predicts a shortage of AAA games in the market due to mass layoffs and other problems faced by the industry. He also said that the production of large-budget projects is becoming more expensive, which is why companies are forced to raise the price tag in the hope of offsetting costs, but this does not always work. If sales fail, companies start making fewer of these games. As Karch notes, the shortage of AAA titles will be especially acute during the winter holidays.
  • Saber Interactive is in an advantageous position, Karch is sure. His company is able to adapt to the market situation and create games without a huge budget.
  • The budgets of AAA games are growing, in particular, due to the fact that the offices of many companies are located "in the most expensive territories of the world," Karch believes. For example, in California. Therefore, Saber Interactive has opened divisions in 15 cities.
  • However, the company will probably sell the upcoming Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine 2 for $70. Karch stated that he would like to make the price tag lower. At least for the digital edition. However, this is unlikely to succeed, given how many resources have been invested in the project.
  • The head of Saber Interactive also noted that his company has grown greatly over the years that it has been part of the Embracer Group. Its staff has increased from 800 to 3,500 people, and there are more affiliated studios. However, Saber Interactive has not adopted the approach of the former parent holding to process management. According to Karch, decentralized governance is less effective. Instead, it's better to help teams directly and share experiences.
  • Saber Interactive is currently working on several large-scale games at once: Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine 2, a remake of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, John Carpenter's Toxic Commando, Jurassic Park: Survival and others. According to Karch, there are too many of them. In the future, the company will try to take on fewer games.
  • During the conversation, Karch recalled the successes of previous Saber Interactive games. He said that World War Z has recouped the development costs 15 times. In total, about $ 12 million was spent on its creation. SnowRunner proved to be even better.
  • Now Karch wants to find a minority investor for Saber Interactive. It is not reported whether he is already negotiating with anyone.

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