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Interview Aspyr

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Interview Aspyr en Anglais

Pour nos chers lecteurs francophones, nous avons traduit l'interview en français, elle est en deuxième page !
Vous trouverez également deux vidéos de l'interview dans la section téléchargements.

Aspyr Media - We feel great about the mac market

JeuxMac - Was the Y2K3 was a good year, better than last year?

Aspyr Media - We are continuing to grow, in the US we have 70% of the mac market, last year we released 14 titles, and we feeled that the market could bear to have more.
The more titles we released, the market would grow along with that.
Last year we shipped MOH and wolfenstein in the same month in the US and both of them sold the honor expectations.

JeuxMac - You said year 2003 was a good year, so what do you think of year 2004?

Aspyr Media - You know, we're planning to do more. One of the things we've been trying to get better about is signing the titles earlier, working on them earlier and shipping them faster, so the version goes faster.
Also, we want to ship the English, French and German version all in the same day; it's one of our goals. We spend a lot of time trying to do that, and some times we fail miserably, some times we do a pretty good job, but I think we have o pretty good system
Right now our pipeline, we have more titles than we've ever had.

JeuxMac - we can expect to have PC/Mac games simultaneously?

Aspyr Media - No, but hopefully it's not 6 months but it's 3 months. Our relationships are getting better with the people: Usually we had to wait for the titles go get one the market, now we get them when they go final, which is usually 2 months before.

JeuxMac - Has Mac OSX helped you do faster work?

Aspyr Media - It has helped with the whole memory situation, we don't have to worry about that setting a memory partition anymore
Now we now that if somebody can run OSX pretty well, he can run our games fine.
We've been doing and we will continue do to OSX only games, because the development times are a month shorter.

JeuxMac - Is it a target for you that most of your games run on lower configs?

Aspyr Media - It is always important that most of the people can use our games, but for some titles such as Splinter Cell, there’s not much you can do because it has so high requirements
the choice is to either wait another year, or not do the game at all.
So we'll do the game, and you know the nice part about that is that in a 6 month period, as Jobs said in the keynote, you'll have a 3GHz G5, and with that machine you play anything!

JeuxMac -Aspyr has very much diversified itself these last years. Why?

Aspyr Media - Aspyr's full name is Aspyr media inc.
The philosophy is that they are all high quality products, the idea is that the consumer knows the other products are of similar quality that the games.

JeuxMac - Are you bringing other products to gamers or gamers to other products?

Aspyr Media - That's a pretty good question. I don't really now, but we've been trying to understand more about our customers lifestyle, and

We've been focused on two things:
•get as high quality products as we can
•find a way to deliver it to customers

JeuxMac - All these new products must bring more money, does that mean we will see more games?

Aspyr Media - This year we will bring 28 games on three different platforms, and our goal is really to do more.
If you think about where you purchase games, music, video, the retailers are pretty much the same. So if the games are good, the rest should be good.

JeuxMac - You've been doing a lot of work on the Tom Clancy license, can we hope to see one day all the Tom Clancy on mac?

Aspyr Media - We love that brand, so we would like to do more, and we're haven better relationship with these guys. Per example, Raven shield didn't took us a while.

JeuxMac - How long does the process between negotiating the license and releasing the game takes?

Aspyr Media - It takes 6 to 8 months to develop a game, then the negociation part is never less than a month.

JeuxMac - Okay let's talk about sports game. you've released a lot of extreme sports games, like skateboarding, waveboarding or surfing. And the fact that you also publish EA Sports games, can we expect to see more "real" sports game like NHL or FIFA games?

Aspyr Media - [they hesitate whether saying it or not...] Well we would love to do more sports games. Actually, part of this reason why we get into the extreme games, is to prove everybody, retailers and license holders, that there's a market out there, and people are ready to buy their games. We really want to do more sports games.

JeuxMac - What are the criteria, in order to choose whether or not you'll bring a game to the mac? Is it only for sales ;-)? or it's because you like it?

Aspyr Media - Well we always like the game we do. Well the first criteria is it has to be fun, it has to be a good game, but does not mean that it's my favorite game, we try to have a bit of variety in titles.

JeuxMac - Can you tell us a bit more about the projects that you going to have in 2004, some that you haven't spoken yet ?? (good try)

Aspyr Media - [They look at each other again, hesitating... but no] Well you know, what I can say is that every AAA games that are on the PC or will coming soon, we're going after, and we've got signed up some already. The reason that we don't announce game that early is that we want to be sure that we've got developer to do the job. We have canceled project that were in development and it's less worst than announcing the game and cancel it after. And there’s also the frustration of anticipations, Like Splinter Cell, we know it'll be out at Christmas, it has been announced a month ago. But let's say we announce Splinter Cell in January, the consumer market, will waiting for it and will asking:" Why does it takes so long?" The frustration over grows and the interest falls because of the waiting. We announce games three to four months before the releasing of the game, but the license holder want to see it before we announce it. So that's why games are closed to beta or final candidate when we announce the games. We also try to be better on the whole process when we announce something and we will be able to ships on the predicated day, it's always a challenge to hit the release date. We also try to bring the translated games faster than we can. It's hard for Europe because every country has it's on distributor. But that's what we want for the year 2004, having game released in French, German and English all together! That's why in February we will open an office in London, to service the Europe customers. It won't be big, maybe five to seven employees, some techies, PR and some marketing and finances.
We will be able to bring all our categories of products to the European market.
Ever quarter we will meet with the press.

JeuxMac - There are a lot of MMPORG on the PC side, but not many on Mac. Would Aspyr do something for this type of games?

Aspyr Media - We talked about bringing StarWars Galaxy, and the Sims Online.
There's a market for that, we are certainly interested in this. The problem of this type of game is the constant updates.
On the other hand, Everquest was brought to mac and has not met a great success, so we have to wait and see.
I would like to see the Mac players play more with the PC players, and there's no reason why not.

Aspyr Media - You know what is coming down for Christmas so far?

JeuxMac - Ahem. Not quite:-)

Aspyr Media - Let us tell you: THPS4 is in duplication right now and should be available in French right now; Kelly Slater pro surfer has just been signed off in the US market; SimCity4 French is coming, it's already here on the floor.
And then we have Indiana Jones, Emperor 2, 007 night fire, Law and Order (maybe not for this market), Splinter cell, Star trek Elite force 2, also a bundle of Living large with the sims together. MOH will be packed with Spearhead.
And these bundles will be charged only $10 more than the basic game.
There should be also Funpacks and Extreme Funpacks, including THPS4.

JeuxMac - Have you thought of bundling some of your games with Apple's machines, so consumers know you can play something else than Bugdom on your mac?

Aspyr Media - We have been trying to do this, and we are in long conversation with Apple on this subject.

JeuxMac - What are you doing this year at Apple Expo 2003?

Aspyr Media - We are feeling the market, and the need for representation.

Jeuxmac: We thank you very much for coming in France and accepting our interview, and are looking forward to see your office in London and your press tours in Europe!
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