Netflix has posted more than a dozen job listings for the Los Angeles office of Netflix Games Studio on its website, as noted by Mobilegamer.biz. These listings give us a few hints about the company’s plans for a new studio. Specifically, Netflix is hiring a game director to work on a “brand new AAA PC game.”
Last month on TechCrunch Disrupt, Netflix VP of Games Mike Verdu initially announced that his company was opening a new studio in Southern California. Verdu also said that Chacko Sonny would head the studio. Sonny is a former executive producer of Overwatch.
Sonny left Blizzard Entertainment, the company behind Overwatch, while the company handled a California sexual harassment and discrimination lawsuit and an investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission. He was also responsible for the development of Overwatch 2.
And now it seems like Netflix wants to put together a core team for the original Netflix Games Studio project in Los Angeles. The Game Director will be in charge of the AAA PC game. This will be the company’s first game for PC, as Netflix currently only offers games for smartphones and tablets.
In the video game industry, AAA projects are big games with very big budgets and development teams. The game director will be responsible for developing “a world/characters/narrative worthy of a Netflix movie/series”. The job listing also mentions experience with Unreal Engine, as well as first and/or third person shooters.
There doesn’t seem to be many people in the studio just yet as Netflix is also looking for an art director and technical director. There are also job listings for top artists and top engineers.
Netflix sees games as a long-term project. At TechCrunch Disrupt, Mike Verdu said that Netflix is still in the very early stages of its gaming initiative.
The company currently offers 40 different games. There are spin-off games based on popular Netflix shows like Stranger Things, classic mobile games like runners and racing, card games, and original games.
Netflix has acquired three existing game studios – Boss Fight Entertainment, Night School Studio (Oxenfree) and Finnish Next Games. The company also opened a new studio in Helsinki, Finland, led by a former Zynga CEO.
Right now, Netflix’s gaming business model is pretty simple. If you are a Netflix subscriber, you can download and play all of the games in the Netflix game library. If you cancel your Netflix subscription, you will no longer be able to access these games.
There are no in-app purchases, season passes, or add-on subscriptions for these games. Of course, Netflix could change its gaming revenue strategy with its new AAA game. But it’s clear that Netflix is in investment mode for now.