â??Devs should fight to own IPâ?? â?? Insomniacâ??s Price

â??Devs should fight to own IPâ?? â?? Insomniacâ??s Price
Michael French

By Michael French

May 25th 2010 at 4:01PM

But itâ??s hard to negotiate for many, key Sony partner and indie studio confesses

A key part of today’s newly announced deal between Insomniac Games and EA Partners is that the independent studio, for the first time, gets to own the IP it has created.

The studio is best known for creating Spyro the Dragon, Ratchet & Clank and Resistance – howeer those properties are owned by other publishers.

Insomniac CEO Ted Price last night told Develop that it’s only right that studios fight to own the properties they create, but the battle for creative control takes its time.
“Yes, I think it’s something most developers do and must fight for but the challenge is that it is difficult to maintain your IP depending on your track record,” he told us.

“It depends on your position in the industry, but it should be the goal for all independents.”

Of course, EA’s third-party distribution division EA Partners is set up for such deals.

Division chief David De Martini said that most developers want creative control from their publishing partner.

“Having spent the last 12 years in the industry, what I’d say is that I don’t think it’s an issue of power, but creative control,” he told Develop.

“If you work for an entity like Insomniac that creates this powerful experiences you will want an element of creative control over where that intellectual property can go. And for an indepndent developer owning an IP and going multiplatform are two of the big key value drivers for an independent.”

Insomniac has been a close ally of Sony’s for 12 years – and will continue to make games for the format-holder – but the new project will help it reach new audiences.

And another luxury of fighting for equality in publishing deals is developers being able to have a say in release timing.

Insomniac and EA haven’t offered any details on the new game – save for the fact it is for 360 and PS3 – saying they will unveil it “when we’re ready”.

Added De Martini: “We all like to work to schedules, but an important rule is that games should ship when they are ready to be shipped. That’s the agreement we have with Insomniac – we aren’t announcing anything about when it ships yet. But when it does ship we know it will be great.”