Netflix opens new gaming studio in California, expands into cloud gaming

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Netflix is opening a new cloud gaming studio in Southern California. Earlier, the company made the move to step into the gaming world with the purchase of several well-known game studios and adding games to their platform for their subscribers to enjoy.

According to statements to TechCrunch from the company’s vice president of gaming, Mike Verdu, they are “seriously researching a cloud gaming offering”. Verdu also said, “It is a value add. We are not asking you to subscribe as a console replacement. It is a completely different business model. The hope is over time that it just becomes this very natural way to play games wherever you are.”

Google ventured into cloud gaming with Stadia but they did not see much success in the area, deciding to shut down the project. Verdu said their product suffered not because of technology but the business model.

The new studio is being opened to hasten the process of game development. Chacko Sonny, former Overwatch executive producer, will be working as the studio head in California. Overwatch 2 was a hit game during its initial release bringing in billions of dollars for Blizzard Entertainment.

Verdu was really excited about Sonny joining Netflix. “He could have done anything, but he chose to come here. You do not get people like that coming to your organization to build the next big thing in gaming unless there’s a sense that we’re really in it for the long haul and in it for the right reasons,” he said.

Netflix currently has 35 games available on their platform for users to enjoy and 14 games in development in their own studios. A total of 55 games are set to release on the platform which will include their own IPs like Stranger Things and licensed IPs like Spongebob SquarePants.

The company says that they still consider itself fairly new and in a very early stage but still plans on expanding beyond mobile games and non-console and VR games.

Earlier, Netflix was facing a huge subscriber loss but has added around 2.4 million new subscribers globally, with most of them from the Asia Pacific region in which India proved to be the biggest driver for growth. The Asia-Pacific is the smallest region for Netflix after US and Canada, Europe, the Middle East and Africa and Latin America.