Sony boss describes first-party PlayStation game development

If you’ve ever wanted to know how a PlayStation first-party title is made, you’ll want to check out the PlayStation.Blog post called “The Making of a PlayStation Game” by SCEA’s Senior VP of Product Development Shu Yoshida. He oversees Sony’s first-party U.S.-based teams, and works with devlopers like Insomniac, Factor 5 and Sucker Punch, so there’s probably no one who’s better suited to tell people how Sony’s development process works.

He talks about Sony’s “Red Light” development process, which is their way of controlling game quality and standards. 

In our case at SCEA, we do not have a “green light” process per se. Rather, we call ours a “red light” process. A project is typically initiated by a studio, whether the idea comes from an internal team or an external developer. We almost never impose a project from “the top down,” where we say something like “We need a fantasy adventure game. Go make one.” Instead, we truly believe the best ideas come from talented individuals who are passionate about their ideas and propose them to us, thus fostering further creativity.

There are quite a few interesting tidbits in this post. Yoshida mentions that even a prototype of a PS3 Blu-ray project can cost $2-5 million, which used to be the budget for a full PlayStation game. He also talks about how projects are later presented to several internal teams, which monitor everything from playability to market appeal. Very interesting stuff.

[Via PlayStation.Blog — Thanks, JV] 

Dale North