By Joseph Leray
Let’s face it, Paradox Interactive has a bad reputation for publishing buggy, slapped together games, but that’s going to change moving forward, according to CEO Frederik Wester.
Speaking with GameSpy, the boss had some harsh words about his company’s games, calling the launch of “Gettysburg: Armored Warfare” “terrible.” The alternate history real-time strategy/third-person shooter hybrid was marred by bugs before being extensively patched.
“We did not do our homework,” Wester said. “It was a one-man team with some backup… we learned a lot from that release. We’ve had many bad releases before that, as well, and we learned something every time.”
Wester also explained that Paradox cancelled four different games last year because they were “not up to the standards we’re currently looking for at Paradox.” Losing four games worth of potential sales was hard for the company — Wester called it “a tough summer” — but the success of “Magicka” and “Crusader Kings 2” allowed the company to weather the blow.
“Today … the Paradox brand is worth so much more that we can actually afford to close projects that don’t meet our new quality standards,” Wester explains, after confidently declaring, “We’re not going to have any more games that are unplayable at release.”
This stands in sharp contrast to Paradox’ earlier business model: “A few years ago, we simply could not afford to cancel games. We needed to release the best product we could release at the time in order to get at least some of the cash we invested back,” explains Wester.
Moving forward, real-time strategy fans can expect to see “ fewer and better titles” from Paradox. “The quality improvement is the most important thing we’re working on right now,” says Wester.
Let’s hope he’s right: “The Showdown Effect,” an arena shooter made by the “Magicka” team that helped right the ship at Paradox, is currently in open beta and will be released this year.