Paradox Interactive - Interview @ US Gamer
Paradox Interactive CEO Fredrik Wester is interviewed by US Gamer to talk about PC gaming, hardcore fans, and new platforms for future releases.
Since he's been CEO of the company, Wester believes that Paradox has found its identity in the larger gaming market. When he first took on the position, Wester told Gamasutra that the publisher does whatever it feels is right for the fans. He believes that statement still remains true today.
"I think we've found the perfect niche, where we feel really happy and we can do whatever we want to do. The most important thing for us is to make the kinds of games that we want to play ourselves," he says. "If we can't get passionate about the products we make, then who else will be passionate?"
Paradox is continuing to serve its passionate niches with titles like Europa Universalis IV, War of the Vikings, and Crusader Kings II, but it's also trying new things. Runemaster represents the company's first internally-developed RPG; it exists because Paradox asked its fans what they wanted to see from the publisher, and they said "RPGs". Runemaster is also a response to larger PC RPG developers moving their focus towards consoles.
"We're putting a lot of effort into developing new RPGs for the PC format," explains Wester. "Many of these big RPGs have gone to the consoles, but we think PC gamers deserve better. We're keeping it in PC format, so the PC gamer get better quality RPGs. That's the next challenge that we're working on."
Wester admits that much of Paradox' output can be complex, dense, and hard for new fans to get into, but he says that's not a problem because Paradox gamers "are our greatest ambassadors." Fervent Paradox consumers convert others with their love for the games and that leads to growth for the company. Services like Steam Early Access and Steam Workshop only increase Paradox's interactions with those fans. Steam Workshop is a big focus for the publisher: Paradox recently hired employees to interface with modders full-time to ensure modders have the tools and help they need to create excellent content for the community.