SouthPeak CEO Tells Us Fate Of GameCock Label Is Undecided

Gamecock is not longer an independent publisher. SouthPeak Interactive acquired them yesterday.

What does this mean for the future of Gamecock? Earlier this month, Gamecock CEO Mike Wilson described their first year as a company as “rough.”

MTV Multiplayer e-mailed questions to SouthPeak CEO Melanie Mroz to find out if the Gamecock brand is dead, what role Wilson will have at SouthPeak, if this is a sign that Gamecock’s style of independent gaming was a failure and more.

Read on to find out what Mroz had to say.

MTV Multiplayer: Describe what made Gamecock an appealing acquisition. What prompted SouthPeak’s talks with Gamecock? Were you looking at anyone else?

Melanie Mroz, Southpeak CEO: Over the last year, we have worked very hard to expand our product pipeline. Gamecock has a solid stable of upcoming games, from “Legendary” to “Mushroom Men” and so on. These titles were very attractive to us and we felt they would be a great asset to our expanding portfolio.

MTV Multiplayer: While SouthPeak’s acqusition of Gamecock is a positive step for SouthPeak, it’s hard to look at it as anything but a sign of defeat for Gamecock’s mantra of independence. Do you agree? What was the flaw in their approach that SouthPeak can correct?

Mroz: I don’t agree at all. There wasn’t a flaw that resulted in this deal. We have stated goals of finding independent developers with unique IPs and with Gamecock gracing the pages of newssites everywhere, it was pretty clear who shared our beliefs. And there isn’t anything to correct. Rather, we look to expand upon their efforts.

MTV Multiplayer: What happens to the Gamecock label? Will it still appear on the boxes for Mushroom Men and Legendary? What about after those games ship?

Mroz: That is still a work in progress. Lots of issues to resolve in terms of branding and such. Those discussions are on-going as we speak.

MTV Multiplayer: Gamecock CEO told us recently “it’s been a rough first year” for the Gamecock brand. How would you evaluate Gamecock’s first year?

Mroz: I think that Gamecock faced what every publisher confronts. Higher development costs, increasing competition, marketing etc. There wasn’t one thing they faced that all other publishers don’t deal with every day. The fact they were upfront about it shows they had nothing to hide.

MTV Multiplayer: How much control will Mike Wilson retain over Gamecock’s future initiatives?

Mroz: We are currently talking with Mike about what role he’d like to play at SouthPeak. There are no decisions or announcements at this time.

MTV Multiplayer: Will any games currently announced under the Gamecock label not make the transition to SouthPeak?

Mroz: I can’t really answer that as I’m very focused on getting the first two games, “Legendary” and “Mushroom Men,” out the door.

MTV Multiplayer: What does the fact that Gamecock needed to be bought say about gamers’ support of independent games?

Mroz: As I have said all day, the independent game developer is the heart and soul of this industry and the fact one publisher joins another doesn’t change that. SouthPeak is willing to take risks on new IPs, like “Two Worlds,” and the gaming community responded. There is some truth in what Mike Wilson talked about over the last year. We do need innovation. Creative freedom. And respect for developers. Who can argue with that?

MTV Multiplayer: Finally, what do you expect of Gamecock in 2009?

Mroz: I think that in 2009 the Gamecock influence will be seen in the products that ultimately come to market. They will be known more for “Mushroom Men” and “Legendary,” than any antics they may have pulled in the past.


What do you make of SouthPeak’s plans for Gamecock, readers?

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