Team 17 breaks ties with publishers

Team 17 has turned its back on third-party publishers in favour of digital distribution.

The UK-based studio is returning to its publishing roots by increasing the number of downloadable games it produces – at least 15 SKUs in 2010 alone.

The company has only released two boxed games over the last three years, but has produced a string of digital titles under its Worms and Alien Breed franchises.

Digital distribution has allowed easy and direct access to the game for millions of customers at a time when it has become difficult to get attention at retail,” co-founder Martyn Brown told MCV.

We have no ambitions to return to retail publishing.”

Team 17 has recently restructured its management team to handle the new shift in focus. Thanks to a series of new recruits and internal promotions, the former development studio feels it has the experience required to operate as an independent digital publisher.

Debbie Bestwick will now take on the dual roles of managing director and sales and marketing director, while Martyn Brown will serve as business development director.

Paul Kilburn and John Dennis will work as head
of production and head of design respectively, while Mark Baldwin becomes community manager.

Paul Bray and Alan Perrie are the UK-based company’s two newest recruits.

Bray will serve as finance and operations director, while Perrie takes on the role of head of global marketing.

Brown added that Team 17 will be working with independent developers to bring their IP to XBLA, PSN, the App Store and more.

He said: I think that given the general malaise of the third party publisher ‘work-for-hire’ market, it is no surprise that a lot of developers are heading towards digital publishing as some kind of saviour.

We are actively involved in working with other independent studios to publish their IP. This is a key aspect of our strategy going forward. We now have the right structure and team in place to accomplish this.”

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