Kelee Santiago, co founder of Thatgamecompany, has been talking to Business Insider. Among other things, she has praised the way the studio was “incubated” at Sony Santa Monica and allowed the opportunity to innovate.
That innovation is certainly repaying the investment that Sony has put into the studio, with FlOw leading download charts in its first year, Flower standing as the most downloaded PSN title for its first year and both games consistently sitting near the top of the charts since then.
Journey is already hotly anticipated and although it marks the end of a three game deal Thatgamecompany has with Sony, it is unlikely to be the end of the two company’s relationship – judging from Kelee’s glowing praise for the publisher.
We were going to be incubated in Sony Santa Monica’s offices, which is where we developed flOw and Flower, our first two titles. It really worked out well because it allowed us to start a game studio without worrying about some of the more managerial aspects.
Know that we finished our first game, we wouldn’t immediately have to start selling our next one. We didn’t have to tackle the challenges of doing a commercial title. That was one of the reasons we went with flOw the first time, it was based on a thesis project that we worked on. It was a pretty fleshed-out Flash prototype. And we could learn from the guys at Sony Santa Monica… who made God of War, they’re some pretty awesome
Kelee also mentioned that Sony is doing the same thing with other smaller studios that have not yet been announced so we can perhaps expect the PSN’s ability to surprise with innovation to continue for a long time to come.