Netflix is expanding into video game development, and has hired a former electronic arts executive to lead the project.
Netflix is planning to move into game development by hiring Mike Verdu, a former Electronic Arts Executive, to reportedly take lead of the company’s video game development. Verdu will report to the Netflix Chief Operating Officer (COO), Greg Peters.
Before joining Netflix, Verdu was the Chief Creative Officer (CCO) at Zynga, between 2009 and 2012, and was also the Vice President of Electronic Arts Mobile. Verdu has reportedly worked on the operation of games such as SimCity and Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes. Most recently, he was the Vice President of Content for Facebook Reality Labs, where he was reportedly responsible for bringing in third-party games and apps to Oculus VR headsets.
According to reports, Netflix will focus on games that engage with stories that people love by basing them on popular shows, such as Stranger Things, Money Heist and the To All the Boys trilogy. The leading streaming entertainment service will also reportedly incorporate interactive shows, such as Black Mirror: Bandersnatch and You v. Wild.
Furthermore, this will reportedly not be Netflix’s first time engaging with gaming properties. The entertainment service has reportedly turned several video games, such as The Witcher and Castlevania, into streaming series on the platform before.
There are reportedly no details yet on what Netflix’s video game service will possibly look like, but reports suggest that it will release games like Apple Arcade, a service where subscribers can reportedly get access to a variety of games. Lastly, reports suggest that the game offerings will be included as part of the current subscription.
Games will reportedly appear as a new genre alongside the content, like what the company previously did with stand-up specials and documentaries. It is currently unclear how the service will function and whether games will be fully streamed, or be downloaded at their runtime before being launched.